Background: Cadherins are a superfamily of transmembrane glycoproteins that contain cadherin repeats of approximately 100 residues in their extracellular domain. Cadherins mediate calcium-dependent cell-cell adhesion and play critical roles in normal tissue development (1). The classic cadherin subfamily includes N-, P-, R-, B-, and E-cadherins, as well as about ten other members that are found in adherens junctions, a cellular structure near the apical surface of polarized epithelial cells. The cytoplasmic domain of classical cadherins interacts with β-catenin, γ-catenin (also called plakoglobin), and p120 catenin. β-catenin and γ-catenin associate with α-catenin, which links the cadherin-catenin complex to the actin cytoskeleton (1,2). While β- and γ-catenin play structural roles in the junctional complex, p120 regulates cadherin adhesive activity and trafficking (1-4). Investigators consider E-cadherin an active suppressor of invasion and growth of many epithelial cancers (1-3). Research studies indicate that cancer cells have upregulated N-cadherin in addition to loss of E-cadherin. This change in cadherin expression is called the "cadherin switch." N-cadherin cooperates with the FGF receptor, leading to overexpression of MMP-9 and cellular invasion (3). Research studies have shown that in endothelial cells, VE-cadherin signaling, expression, and localization correlate with vascular permeability and tumor angiogenesis (5,6). Investigators have also demonstrated that expression of P-cadherin, which is normally present in epithelial cells, is also altered in ovarian and other human cancers (7,8).
Application Methods: Immunohistochemistry (Paraffin), Western Blotting
Background: Caspase-3 (CPP-32, Apoptain, Yama, SCA-1) is a critical executioner of apoptosis, as it is either partially or totally responsible for the proteolytic cleavage of many key proteins, such as the nuclear enzyme poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) (1). Activation of caspase-3 requires proteolytic processing of its inactive zymogen into activated p17 and p12 fragments. Cleavage of caspase-3 requires the aspartic acid residue at the P1 position (2).