Changes in the proteome of colon mucosal cells accompany the transition from normal mucosa via adenoma and invasive cancer to metastatic disease. Samples from 15 patients with sporadic sigmoid cancers were analyzed. Proteins were separated by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis. Relative differences in expression levels between normal tissue, adenoma, carcinoma and metastasis were evaluated in both intra- and inter-patient comparisons. Up- and down-regulated proteins (> twofold) during development to cancer or metastasis were excised and submitted to peptide mass fingerprinting and MS/MS sequence analysis, facilitated by the use of a compact disc workstation. In total, 112 protein spots were found to be differentially regulated, of which 72 were determined as to protein identity, 46 being up-regulated toward the progression of cancer, and 26 down-regulated. Several of the identifications correlate with proteins of the cell cycle, cytoskeleton or metabolic pathways. The pattern changes now identified have the potential for design of marker panels for assistance in diagnostics and therapeutic strategies in colorectal cancer.
2004. Vol. 61, no 10