IMP3 signatures of fallopian tube: A risk for pelvic serous cancers

Yiying Wang, Yue Wang, Dake Li, Lingmin Li, Wenjing Zhang, Guang Yao, Zhong Jiang, Wenxin Zheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background: Recent advances suggest fallopian tube as the main cellular source for women's pelvic serous carcinoma (PSC). In addition to TP53 mutations, many other genetic changes are involved in pelvic serous carcinogenesis. IMP3 is an oncofetal protein which has recently been observed to be overexpressed in benign-looking tubal epithelia. Such findings prompted us to examine the relationship between IMP3 over-expression, patient age and the likelihood of development of PSC. Methods. Fallopian tubes from three groups (low-risk, high-risk, and PSC) of patients with matched ages were studied. Age was recorded in 10 years intervals ranging from age 20 to older than 80. The number of IMP3 signatures (defined by 10 or more tubal secretory cells stained positively and continuously in benign appearing tubal mucosa) from both tubal fimbria and ampulla segments was measured. The data was analyzed by standard contingency table and Poisson distribution methods after age adjustment. IMP3 overexpression was also examined in serous tubal intraepithelial carcinoma and PSC. Results: The positive IMP3-stained cells are mainly tubal secretory cells. The absolute number of tubal IMP3 signatures increased significantly within each age group. Age remained a significant risk factor for serous neoplasia after age adjustment. IMP3 signatures were more frequent in the patients of both high-risk and PSC groups. The presence of IMP3 signatures in tubal mucosa was significantly associated with tubal or pelvic serous carcinogenesis (p < 0.001). Conclusions: The findings suggest that tubal secretory cells with IMP3 signatures showing growth advantage could potentially serve as a latent precancer biomarker for tubal or pelvic serous carcinomas in women.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number49
JournalJournal of Hematology and Oncology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 12 2014


  • Fallopian tube
  • IMP3 signature
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Pelvic serous carcinoma
  • Tubal secretory cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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