Colon cancer (CC) and epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) are common and severe neoplasms frequently sharing a massive inflammatory involvement of peritoneum. A detailed molecular characterization of such carcinomatosis has not been performed, so far.
Omental adipocytes were isolated from thirty-three adult women who underwent primary surgery for CC or EOC. Expression of several pro-inflammatory genes was determined by real-time PCR and immunofluorescence. Data were related to the clinical phenotype of the patients.
CD68, FGFR1, and IL-6 were significantly more expressed in adipocytes from CC patients and VEGF in adipocytes from EOC. TNFα, TGFβ, or MCP-1, as well as the pro-inflammatory platform P2X7R-NLRP3, did not differ between the 2 cancers. White blood cell count, mirroring systemic inflammation, was related to adipocyte P2X7R (R = 0.508, p = 0.003), NLRP3 (R = 0.405; p = 0.02), and MCP-1 (R = 0.448; p = 0.009). P2X7R and NLRP3 were the only inflammatory factors significantly more expressed in patients carrying both omental and peritoneal carcinosis, who were also characterized by a higher leukocytosis. None of the tested inflammatory markers was associated with tumor grading for both neoplasms; however, the presence of metastases was associated with a higher adipocyte expression of FGFR1 and TGFβ.
We show here that rarely measured molecules seem to specifically characterize omental carcinomatosis of CC or EOC, while more common inflammatory agents like TNFα, TGFβ, or MCP-1 do not; the P2X7R-NLRP3 complex marks omental and peritoneal carcinosis and is related to circulating white blood cells and MCP-1, involved in monocyte-macrophage tissue infiltration; increased TGFβ and FGFR1 characterize the tumoral dissemination.

© 2021 S. Karger AG, Basel.