J Cancer 2020; 11(14):4081-4090. doi:10.7150/jca.41736

Research Paper

The Expression of Perilipin Family Proteins can be used as Diagnostic Markers of Liposarcoma and to Differentiate Subtypes

Qiaochu Zhang1*, Pengpeng Zhang1,3*, Bingcheng Li1, Hongwei Dang1, Jinfang Jiang1, Lian Meng1, Haijun Zhang1, Yangyang Zhang1, Xiaomeng Wang1, Qianru Li1, Yang wang1, Chunxia Liu1✉, Feng Li1,2✉

1. Department of Pathology and Key Laboratory for Xinjiang Endemic and Ethnic Diseases, The First Affiliated Hospital, Shihezi University School of Medicine, Shihezi 832002, China
2. Department of Pathology and Medical Research Center, Beijing Chaoyang Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100020, China
3. Department of Pathology, Beijing Friendship Hospital, Capital Medical University, National Clinical Research Center for Digestive Diseases, Beijing, 100032 China
* Equal contributors and co-first authors.

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). See http://ivyspring.com/terms for full terms and conditions.
Zhang Q, Zhang P, Li B, Dang H, Jiang J, Meng L, Zhang H, Zhang Y, Wang X, Li Q, wang Y, Liu C, Li F. The Expression of Perilipin Family Proteins can be used as Diagnostic Markers of Liposarcoma and to Differentiate Subtypes. J Cancer 2020; 11(14):4081-4090. doi:10.7150/jca.41736. Available from http://www.jcancer.org/v11p4081.htm

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Objective: Liposarcoma is a mesenchymal malignant tumor characterized by adipocyte differentiation which is divided into four subtypes with different prognosis. Accurate histopathological diagnosis is essential for precise treatment. Perilipins, including PLIN1, PLIN2, PLIN3, PLIN4, PLIN5, is a family of lipid droplet-associated proteins that participate in lipid metabolism regulation. The role that perilipins play in sarcomas is not clear. This study aims to assess perilipins expression in subtypes of liposarcoma and various non-lipomatous sarcomas.

Methods: A large set of 245 soft tissue sarcoma paraffin-embedded samples including 66 liposarcomas and 179 non-lipomatous sarcomas were collected for tissue microarray and immunohistochemistry to assess perilipins expression.

Results: PLIN1 expression was shown in most liposarcomas (41/66) and was absent in non-lipomatous sarcomas (0/179). PLIN4 expression was shown in some liposarcomas (21/66) and was almost negative in non-lipomatous sarcomas (2/179). PLIN1 and PLIN4 expressions in liposarcoma were higher (both P<0.001) than those in non-lipomatous sarcoma. Both PLIN1 and PLIN4 also had a significant difference in liposarcoma subtypes (both P<0.001). PLIN2, PLIN3 and PLIN5 were widely expressed in liposarcomas, rhabdomyosarcomas, leiomyosarcomas, dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans, undifferentiated sarcomas, fibrosarcomas, Ewing's sarcomas and epithelioid sarcomas. PLIN2, PLIN3 and PLIN5 expressions were significantly different among non-lipomatous sarcoma (all P<0.01).

Except for PLIN3, the expression of the other four perilipin members in liposarcoma was pairwise related.

Conclusions: PLIN1 and PLIN4 can be used as diagnostic markers of liposarcoma and to differentiate liposarcoma subtypes. The combined application of whole perilipin family immunohistochemistry may help to distinguish differently differentiated sarcomas.

Keywords: Perilipin, Liposarcoma, Non-lipomatous sarcoma, Tissue microarray, Immunohistochemistry