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Open Access Research

The expression of selenium-binding protein 1 is decreased in uterine leiomyoma

Peng Zhang, Cunxian Zhang*, Xudong Wang, Fang Liu, C James Sung, M Ruhul Quddus and W Dwayne Lawrence

Author Affiliations

Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island, Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, 101 Dudley Street, Providence, Rhode Island 02905, USA

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Diagnostic Pathology 2010, 5:80  doi:10.1186/1746-1596-5-80

Published: 9 December 2010

Abstract

Background

Selenium has been shown to inhibit cancer development and growth through the mediation of selenium-binding proteins. Decreased expression of selenium-binding protein 1 has been reported in cancers of the prostate, stomach, colon, and lungs. No information, however, is available concerning the roles of selenium-binding protein 1 in uterine leiomyoma.

Methods

Using Western Blot analysis and immunohistochemistry, we examined the expression of selenium-binding protein 1 in uterine leiomyoma and normal myometrium in 20 patients who had undergone hysterectomy for uterine leiomyoma.

Results and Discussion

The patient age ranged from 34 to 58 years with a mean of 44.3 years. Proliferative endometrium was seen in 8 patients, secretory endometrium in 7 patients, and atrophic endometrium in 5 patients. Two patients showed solitary leiomyoma, and eighteen patients revealed 2 to 5 tumors. Tumor size ranged from 1 to 15.5 cm with a mean of 4.3 cm. Both Western Blot analysis and immunohistochemistry showed a significant lower level of selenium-binding protein 1 in leiomyoma than in normal myometrium. Larger tumors had a tendency to show a lower level of selenium-binding protein 1 than smaller ones, but the difference did not reach a statistical significance. The expression of selenium-binding protein 1 was the same among patients with proliferative, secretory, and atrophic endometrium in either leiomyoma or normal myometrium. Also, we did not find a difference of selenium-binding protein 1 level between patients younger than 45 years and older patients in either leiomyoma or normal myometrium.

Conclusions

Decreased expression of selenium-binding protein 1 in uterine leiomyoma may indicate a role of the protein in tumorigenesis. Our findings may provide a basis for future studies concerning the molecular mechanisms of selenium-binding protein 1 in tumorigenesis as well as the possible use of selenium in prevention and treatment of uterine leiomyoma.