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Front Horm Res. 2004;32:110-26.

Proliferation markers and cell cycle inhibitors in pituitary adenomas.

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Institute of Pathology of the Marienkrankenhaus Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany.


Proliferation markers are widely used in general surgical pathology and also in pituitary pathology. They should help for differing aggressive or rapidly growing tumors from those with slower growth, as cellular atypia is not helpful for identifying aggressive adenomas of the pituitary. Only the number of mitoses is important for prognosis. A lot of markers can be used: antibodies for cyclins A, B, D and E, for proliferating cell nuclear antigen, Ki-67/Mib-1, antibodies for the inhibitory proteins p16, p27, p53, and for DNA topoisomerase IIalpha. A marker for apoptosis and its inhibitors may be also important. From our experiences, Mib-1 is the most reliable marker. The recommendation of this marker in the WHO classification of pituitary adenomas is fully justified.

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