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Virchows Arch. 2001 Jan;438(1):13-22.

The association between tumour progression and vascularity in myxofibrosarcoma and myxoid/round cell liposarcoma.

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1
Dermatohistopathologisches Gemeinschaftslabor, Friedrichshafen, Germany. tmentzel@w-4.de

Abstract

Angiogenesis is an important factor in the morphological progression and metastasis of many solid tumours. We studied two homogeneous series of myxofibrosarcoma (MFS) and myxoid/round liposarcoma (MRLS), characterised by distinct vascular patterns and correlated the intratumoral microvessel density (IMD) with morphologic progression in both types of sarcoma. In our study, 43 cases of MFS and 42 cases of MRLS were graded according to established diagnostic criteria. For evaluation of IMD, representative sections were stained immunohistochemically for CD31. After selection of "neovascular hot spots", IMD was calculated by measuring the endothelial surface within twenty 200x fields in relation to the total analysed area. In addition to the correlation of IMD with histological grades of malignancy, a correlation of IMD with the inflammatory infiltrate in MFS was done. To determine whether vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and its receptors, KDR and flt-1, may play a role in the progression of both types of sarcomas, we used mRNA in situ hybridisation (ISH) to study VEGF, KDR and flt-1 expression in selected cases. In addition, the expression of thrombospondin-1, which has been reported to inhibit angiogenesis, and of collagen type I was studied using mRNA ISH. Cases of MFS varied histologically from hypocellular, mainly myxoid, neoplasms (low-grade malignant, 18 cases) to intermediate-grade malignant lesions with increased cellularity and mitotic activity (13 cases), and high-grade malignant cases with marked pleomorphism, high proliferative activity and areas of necrosis in many cases (12 cases). Cases of purely low-grade myxoid liposarcoma (16 cases) were characterised by low-cellularity, mucin pooling and plexiform vasculature. In combined MRLS, these hypocellular areas were admixed with hypercellular, round cell areas (5-80% of the analysed tumour area; 23 cases), and in round cell liposarcoma (three cases) rounded tumour cells predominated (>80% of the analysed tumour area). The average IMD in intermediate and high-grade malignant MFS (4.03 and 4.09, respectively) was significantly higher than in low-grade malignant MFS (2.73). Correlation of vascularity with the inflammatory infiltrate in MFS showed increased IMD only in cases with abundant neutrophils; most of these cases were high-grade malignant neoplasms. In contrast, no statistical correlation between morphological progression and IMD was seen in myxoid liposarcoma (6.08), MRLS (6.57) and round cell liposarcoma (4.07). VEGF mRNA was expressed by tumour cells in all histological grades of MFS and MRLS. VEGF receptor mRNA was weakly expressed by endothelia of newly formed blood vessels in both entities. Interestingly, tumour cells of all analysed cases of MFS strongly expressed collagen type I and thrombospondin-1, while these proteins were not detected in tumour cells of MRLS. In conclusion, morphologic tumour progression in MFS is associated with increased IMD, whereas, in MRLS, no such correlation is seen. Whereas VEGF and VEGF receptor mRNA were expressed in both entities, a characteristic expression profile of collagen type I and thrombospondin-1 in MFS emerged. Further studies are necessary to correlate vascularity and clinical course in MFS and MRLS.

PMID:
11213831
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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