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Dig Dis Sci. 2008 Mar;53(3):844-9. Epub 2007 Sep 1.

Immunohistochemical expression of components of the Akt-mTORC1 pathway is associated with hepatocellular carcinoma in patients with chronic liver disease.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, The University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60612, USA. scotler@uic.edu


Activation of the Akt-mTORC1 signaling pathway was evaluated in premalignant and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) lesions by assessing the expression of pS6, an Akt effector, and PTEN, an Akt suppressor.


Immunohistochemical staining for pS6 and PTEN was performed on liver tissue from 52 patients with cirrhosis, with and without HCC. Two pathologists independently evaluated pS6 staining on a semiquantitative scale and categorized PTEN staining as present or absent.


In the HCC group, pS6 staining was greatest in HCC, followed by dysplasia, and benign cirrhotic tissue (P < 0.001). pS6 staining was greater in cirrhotic tissue from patients with HCC compared to cirrhosis in patients without HCC (P = 0.03). PTEN staining in tumor was absent in 8/33 (24%) cases. Loss of PTEN expression was more common in patients with higher tumor stage, compared to those with stage 1 tumors (P = 0.04).


Immunohistochemical evidence of activation of the Akt-mTORC1 pathway is associated with HCC.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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