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AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2004 Dec;183(6):1585-93.

Expression of vascular endothelial growth factor in hepatocellular carcinoma and the surrounding liver: correlation with angiographically assisted CT.

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  • 1Department of Radiology, Gifu University School of Medicine, Gifu 501-1193, Japan.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

The purpose of our study was to assess the correlation between the intensity and characteristics of contrast enhancement on angiographically assisted CT and the intensity of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) expression in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and in the surrounding nontumorous liver.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

The intensity of VEGF expression in HCC and in the surrounding liver was expressed as a VEGF expression index by Western blot analysis in 20 surgical specimens resected in 20 patients between March 2000 and August 2002. Findings on CT during arterial portography (n = 20) and CT hepatic arteriography (n = 17) were retrospectively evaluated to determine contrast enhancement indexes and the enhancement characteristics of HCCs and of the surrounding liver. Contrast enhancement indexes and VEGF expression indexes were correlated using a simple regression test, and enhancement characteristics and VEGF expression indexes were correlated using the Spearman's rank correlation test.

RESULTS:

On CT hepatic arteriography, the contrast enhancement indexes of HCCs showed moderate inverse correlation with the VEGF expression indexes of HCCs (r = -0.57, p = 0.017) and high inverse correlation with the differences between the VEGF expression indexes of HCCs and those of livers (difference in the VEGF expression index, -0.80; p = 0.0001). The contrast enhancement index of the liver showed marginal moderate direct correlation with the VEGF expression index of the liver (0.44, p = 0.076) and high inverse correlation with the difference in the VEGF expression index (-0.71, p = 0.0013). On CT during arterial portography, the contrast enhancement indexes of HCCs showed moderate inverse correlation with the difference in the VEGF expression index (-0.51, p = 0.023). The qualitative degree of heterogeneity of hepatic artery enhancement in HCC on CT hepatic arteriography showed moderate direct correlation with the VEGF expression indexes of HCCs (0.55, p = 0.033) and high direct correlation with the difference in the VEGF expression indexes (0.73, p = 0.004).

CONCLUSION:

Our results indicated that the intensity and heterogeneity of hepatic artery enhancement of HCCs on CT hepatic arteriography correlated with the degree of VEGF expression in HCCs.

PMID:
15547195
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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