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Appl Immunohistochem Mol Morphol. 2004 Jun;12(2):111-21.

Expression profiling of colorectal carcinomas using tissue microarrays: cell cycle regulatory proteins p21, p27, and p53 as immunohistochemical prognostic markers in univariate and multivariate analysis.

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Institute of Pathology, University of Rostock, Rostock, Germany.


With the rapidly growing understanding of tumor biology, molecular staging of cancer is expected to improve prognostication. This would be particularly important for cancers amenable to adjuvant treatment, such as colorectal carcinomas. To generate data for this, the tissue microarray technique may prove useful. Tissue microarrays were constructed with triplicate cores (0.6 mm diameter) from the invasive margins of a consecutive single-institution series of 184 colorectal carcinomas. Immunostaining for p53, p21, p27, Ecadherin, and beta-catenin was scored. Tumor cell proliferation was assessed by mitotic indices and Ki-67 labeling, apoptosis by quantification of apoptotic bodies. Reduced nuclear immunostaining for p21 (<10%) and p27 (< or =50%) and reduced membranous expression of Ecadherin were significantly associated with a poorer clinical course by univariate analysis. beta-catenin immunostaining had no prognostic impact. Mitotic and apoptotic indices as well as Ki-67 labeling below the median were indicators of poor prognosis. Complete absence of p53 nuclear staining was a significant adverse prognostic factor. By Cox regression, p53 = 0%, p53 = 0%, in combination with p27 < or = 50%, the mitotic index and the combined mitotic and apoptotic index added prognostic information to UICC stage. The authors found that growth pattern, lymphohistiocytic response, lymphatic permeation, and venous spread, too, each was a strong prognosticator in addition to UICC stage. The results support that tissue microarrays are a useful tool for screening immunohistochemical markers for prognostic use. An immunopanel of p21, p27, and p53 could be useful for prognostication in colorectal carcinoma in addition to UICC stage.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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