The fetal adrenal cortex lacks expression of the enzyme early on, thus mineralocorticoids (. aldosterone ) and glucocorticoids (. cortisol ) cannot be synthesized. This is significant because cortisol induces type II pneumocytes of the lungs to synthesize and secrete pulmonary surfactant ; without pulmonary surfactant to reduce the alveolar surface tension , premature neonates may die of neonatal respiratory distress syndrome . If delivery is unavoidable (. because of placental abruption , or pre-eclampsia / HELLP syndrome ), then glucocorticoids (. cortisol) can be administered.
Elevated serum GPI levels have been used as a prognostic biomarker for colorectal , breast , lung , kidney , gastrointestinal , and other cancers .   As AMF, GPI is attributed with regulating cell migration during invasion and metastasis .  One study showed that the external layers of breast tumor spheroids (BTS) secrete GPI, which induces epithelial–mesenchymal transition (EMT), invasion, and metastasis in BTS. The GPI inhibitors ERI4P and 6PG were found to block metastasis of BTS but not BTS glycolysis or fibroblast viability. In addition, GPI is secreted exclusively by tumor cells and not normal cells. For these reasons, GPI inhibitors may be a safer, more targeted approach for anti-cancer therapy.  GPI also participates in a positive feedback loop with HER2 , a major breast cancer therapeutic target, as GPI enhances HER2 expression and HER2 overexpression enhances GPI expression, and so on. As a result, GPI activity likely confers resistance in breast cancer cells against HER2-based therapies using Herceptin /Trastuzumab, and should be considered as an additional target when treating patients.