Upregulation of the oncogene c-myc in Barrett's adenocarcinoma: induction of c-myc by acidified bile acid in vitro.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


  • CD Morris
  • D Wakelin
  • Edward Harper
  • Rebecca Harrison
  • SE Attwood
  • JA Jankowski

Colleges, School and Institutes


BACKGROUND AND AIMS: C-myc over expression is implicated in malignancy although to date this has not been studied in Barrett's metaplasia. We sought to determine c-myc expression in the malignant progression of Barrett's metaplasia and whether it may be induced by bile acids seen in gastro-oesophageal refluxate. METHODS: C-myc protein and mRNA levels were assessed in 20 Barrett's metaplasia and 20 oesophageal adenocarcinoma samples by western blotting and real time polymerase chain reaction. Levels of c-myc and proliferation were also assessed in cell lines OE21, OE33, SW-480, and TE-7 stimulated with pulses or continuous exposure to the bile acids deoxycholic acid and chenodeoxycholic acid. RESULTS: C-myc protein was upregulated in 50% of Barrett's metaplasia and 90% of oesophageal adenocarcinoma samples compared with squamous, gastric, and duodenal controls. C-myc immunolocalisation in Barrett's metaplasia revealed discrete nuclear localisation, becoming more diffuse with progression from low to high grade dysplasia to adenocarcinoma. Both continual and pulsed bile acid induced c-myc at pH 4, with no effect at pH 7 or with acidified media alone. Pulsed bile acid treatment induced proliferation (p


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)174-80
Number of pages7
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2003