Secretin receptors in normal and diseased human pancreas: Marked reduction of receptor binding in ductal neoplasia

Meike Körner, Gregory M. Hayes, Ruth Rehmann, Arthur Zimmermann, Helmut Friess, Laurence J. Miller, Jean Claude Reubi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Receptors for gut hormones, which are often overexpressed in cancer, are clinically relevant for receptor-targeted tumor imaging and therapy. Because the receptors for the gut hormone secretin are poorly characterized, we assessed secretin receptor expression in the main secretin target, the human pancreas. We investigated 58 non-neoplastic pancreases and 55 pancreatic tumors for receptor localization and density by in vitro receptor autoradiography using [ 125I]Tyr10 rat secretin and for secretin receptor mRNA by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction. Secretin receptors were highly expressed in non-neoplastic ducts and lobuli and also in lower amounts in ductal neoplasias, including ductal adenocarcinoma, intraductal papillary mucinous tumors, and pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia. Reverse transcriptase- polymerase chain reaction revealed wild-type receptor mRNA in the non-neoplastic pancreas and both wild-type and spliced variant receptor transcripts in ductal adenocarcinomas. Serous cystic tumors were highly positive for secretin receptors, whereas mucinous cystic tumors were negative. This study is the first to describe the precise secretin receptor distribution in human non-neoplastic pancreas and various pancreatic tumors. High secretin receptor expression hi the non-neoplastic ducts reflects the major role of secretin in bicarbonate secretion. Reduced secretin binding in pancreatic ductal tumors may relate to (alternatively spliced) secretin receptor isoforms. Thus, secretin receptors in pancreatic tumors may represent potential clinical targets.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)959-968
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Pathology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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