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Virchows Arch. 2002 Jun;440(6):594-7. Epub 2002 Feb 21.

Expression of cyclo-oxygenase-2 in human tongue carcinoma and its precursor lesions.

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Transplantion Laboratory, Haarman Institute and Helsinki University Central Hospital, P.O. Box 21, Haarmaninkatu 3, 00014 Helsinki, Finland.


The expression of Cox-2 protein was studied by immunohistochemistry in normal oral mucosa and in mucosa with various lesions of oral leukoplakia, including hyperplasia and dysplasia of squamous epithelium and frank invasive squamous carcinoma. A gradient of Cox-2 staining was found: the expression of Cox-2 was lowest in normal epithelium, somewhat increased in hyperplastic epithelium, further increased in dysplastic epithelium, and highest in invasive squamous cell carcinomas. The presence of Cox-2 in squamous cell carcinomas of the oral mucosa and its precursor lesions indicate that Cox-2 could participate in the carcinogenic process of these oral malignancies.

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