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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Volume 2010 (2010), Article ID 427694, 7 pages
Research Article

Expression of Monocarboxylate Transporters 1, 2, and 4 in Human Tumours and Their Association with CD147 and CD44

1Life and Health Sciences Research Institute (ICVS), School of Health Sciences, University of Minho, Campus of Gualtar, 4710-057 Braga, Portugal
2Institute of Molecular Pathology and Immunology of Porto University (IPATIMUP), The University of Porto, 4200-465 Porto, Portugal
3Laboratory of Medical Investigation (LIM-14), School of Medicine, São Paulo University, 01246-903 São Paulo, Brazil
4Faculty of Medicine, The University of Porto, 4200-319 Porto, Portugal

Received 3 November 2009; Revised 12 February 2010; Accepted 12 February 2010

Academic Editor: Anne Hamburger

Copyright © 2010 Céline Pinheiro et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Monocarboxylate transporters (MCTs) are important cellular pH regulators in cancer cells; however, the value of MCT expression in cancer is still poorly understood. In the present study, we analysed MCT1, MCT2, and MCT4 protein expression in breast, colon, lung, and ovary neoplasms, as well as CD147 and CD44. MCT expression frequency was high and heterogeneous among the different tumours. Comparing with normal tissues, there was an increase in MCT1 and MCT4 expressions in breast carcinoma and a decrease in MCT4 plasma membrane expression in lung cancer. There were associations between CD147 and MCT1 expressions in ovarian cancer as well as between CD147 and MCT4 in both breast and lung cancers. CD44 was only associated with MCT1 plasma membrane expression in lung cancer. An important number of MCT1 positive cases are negative for both chaperones, suggesting that MCT plasma membrane expression in tumours may depend on a yet nonidentified regulatory protein.