2014 Volume 47 Issue 6 Pages 289-294
Emerin is a LEM domain-containing integral membrane protein of the vertebrate nuclear envelope. Recently it has been reported that emerin regulates tissue-specific gene/protein expression. We studied the relationship between emerin expression and follicle function in normal and hyperplastic human thyroid tissues using immunohistochemistry and statistical methods. Emerin immunoreactivity was heterogeneous among follicular cells and follicles in normal thyroid tissue. It tended to be strong in the nuclei of tall follicular cells of small follicles and weak or negative in the nuclei of flat follicular cells of large follicles. Follicles with strong expression of emerin were also strongly positive for thyroglobulin (Tg) and thyroxine (T4) in follicular cells and colloid substance, suggesting active functioning follicles. In contrast, large follicles with weak expression of emerin were also weak or negative for Tg and T4. Emerin immunoreactivity was strong in almost all nuclei of hyperplastic follicular cells in Graves’ disease tissues. These findings suggest that emerin expression may be related with follicular function and may contribute to the understanding of hormonogenesis in normal thyroid follicles.