Decoy receptor 3 (DcR3), a member of the tumor necrosis factor receptor (TNFR) superfamily, is associated with anti-tumor immunity suppression. It is highly expressed in many tumors, and its expression can be regulated by the MAPK/MEK/ERK signaling pathway. The MAPK/MEK/ERK pathway has been reported to be a regulator in tumor occurrence, development and clonal expansion. External-signal regulated kinase (ERK) is a vital member of this pathway.
The expression of DcR3 and ERK1/2 in tumor tissues of gastric cancer patients was significantly higher than the non-cancerous group (P<0.05). There was no statistical difference among tumor tissues from patients with different ages or gender, and even of different differentiation (P>0.05). However, in patients with stage I gastric cancer, the DcR3 and ERK1/2 levels were significantly lower than patients with more advanced stages.
DcR3 and ERK1/2 play a vital role in the development of gastric cancer, and they may be new markers for indicating the efficiency of gastric cancer treatment in the future.