Overexpression of the prostaglandin E2 receptor EP2 results in enhanced skin tumor development

Y. M. Sung, G. He, D. H. Hwang, S. M. Fischer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations


We previously showed that the EP2 knockout mice were resistant to chemically induced skin carcinogenesis. The purpose of this study was to investigate the role of the overexpression of the EP2 receptor in mouse skin carcinogenesis. To determine the effect of overexpression of EP2, we used EP2 transgenic (TG) mice and wild-type (WT) mice in a DMBA (7,12- dimethylbenz[α]anthracene)/TPA (12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate) two-stage carcinogenesis protocol. EP2 TG mice developed significantly more tumors compared with WT mice. Overexpression of the EP2 receptor increased TPA-induced keratinocyte proliferation both in vivo and in vitro. In addition, the epidermis of EP2 TG mice 48 h after topical TPA treatment was significantly thicker compared to that of WT mice. EP2 TG mice showed significantly increased cyclic adenosine monophosphate levels in the epidermis after prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) treatment. The inflammatory response to TPA was increased in EP2 TG mice, as demonstrated by an increased number of macrophages in the dermis. Tumors and 7 × TPA-treated and DMBA-TPA-treated (6 weeks) skins from EP2 TG mice produced more blood vessels than those of WT mice as determined by CD-31 immunostaining. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) protein expression was significantly increased in squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) samples from EP2 TG mice compared that of WT mice. There was, however, no difference in the number of apoptotic cells in tumors from WT and EP2 TG mice. Together, our results suggest that the overexpression of the EP2 receptor plays a significant role in the protumorigenic action of PGE2 in mouse skin.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5507-5516
Number of pages10
Issue number40
StatePublished - Sep 7 2006


  • Angiogenesis
  • EP2 transgenic mice
  • Proliferation
  • Prostaglandin E2
  • Skin carcinogenesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cancer Research
  • Genetics


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