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Gynecol Oncol. 2001 Aug;82(2):257-60.

Telomerase activity in sex cord-stromal tumors of the ovary.

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1
Section of Gynecologic Surgery, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota 55905, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Telomerase is a ribonucleoprotein that protects chromosomes from degradation and end-to-end fusions by maintaining telomere length. Studies have shown that telomerase is present in 95% of gynecologic malignancies and in 88% of epithelial ovarian carcinomas but undetectable in benign tissue. The aim of this investigation was to determine whether telomerase is present in sex cord-stromal tumors and whether telomerase activity is indicative of patient outcomes.

METHODS:

Forty-five consecutive sex cord-stromal ovarian tumors were analyzed by using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction for expression of human telomerase, human telomerase reverse transcriptase, and telomerase activity.

RESULTS:

Of the 29 patients with malignant cell types (granulosa cell, Sertoli-Leydig cell, and steroid cell tumors), 21 of the 28 patients (75%) available for follow-up had recurrence, with a mean follow-up of 86 months (95% CI, 36-157 months). The telomerase repeat amplification protocol assay had a sensitivity of 74% and specificity of 94% for malignancy. Patients with telomerase-positive tumors had a mean disease-free interval of 66.5 months; for those with telomerase-negative tumors the interval was 90 months. In addition, patients with telomerase-positive tumors were more likely to be dead from disease or alive with disease than those without telomerase activity, and they showed trends toward requiring a larger number of surgical procedures for the treatment of their disease. However, these trends were not statistically significant.

CONCLUSION:

Although activation of telomerase is clearly an important step in carcinogenesis, it is unlikely to be helpful in the clinical management of sex cord-stromal tumors of the ovary.

PMID:
11531276
DOI:
10.1006/gyno.2001.6293
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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