Laryngeal squamous cell carcinoma (LSCC) is the second most common cancer of the head and neck. In order to identify differentially expressed genes which may have a role in LSCC carcinogenesis, we performed GeneFishing Assay. One of the differentially expressed genes was the SLC22A23 (solute carrier family 22, member 23) gene.
SLC22A23 belongs to a family of organic ion transporters that are responsible for the absorption or excretion of many drugs, xenobiotics and endogenous compounds in a variety of tissues. SLC22A23 is expressed in a various tissues but no substrates or functions have been identified for it. Although the exact function is unknown, single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) which are located in SLC22A23 gene were associated with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), endometriosis-related infertility and the clearance of antipsychotic drugs. On the other hand SLC22A23 is identified as a prognostic gene to predict the recurrence of triple-negative breast cancer.
To understand the role of the SLC22A23 gene in laryngeal carcinogenesis, we investigated its mRNA expression level in laryngeal tumor tissue and adjacent non-cancerous tissue samples obtained from 83 patients by quantitative real-time PCR. To understand the association between SNPs in SLC22A23 and LSCC, selected genetic variations (rs4959235, rs6923667, rs9503518) were genotyped.
We found that SLC22A23 expression was increased in 46 of 83 tumor tissues (55.4%) and was decreased in 30 of 83 (36.1%) tumor tissues compared to normal tissues. 77.2% of patients were homozygote for genotype rs9503518-AA and they most frequently had histological grade 2 and 3 tumors. We also found that rs9503518-AA genotype is associated with increased SLC22A23 expression.
Our results indicate that SLC22A23 may play a role in the development of laryngeal cancer.