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Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2005 Dec;46(12):4372-5.

Receptors for the liver synthesized growth factors IGF-1 and HGF/SF in uveal melanoma: intercorrelation and prognostic implications.

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Cellular and Molecular Tumor Pathology, Department of Oncology and Pathology, Karolinska Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden.



Uveal melanoma disseminates preferentially to the liver. The mechanism for this homing is largely unknown, but growth factors synthesized in the liver may be involved. The present study was undertaken to investigate the possible relationship between cell surface receptors for two such growth factors: the c-Met proto-oncogene, which constitutes the receptor for hepatocyte growth factor/scatter factor (HGF/SF), and the insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor (IGF-1R). Their role as a prognostic factor was also clarified.


Paraffin-embedded tumor specimens from 132 patients with primary uveal melanoma were analyzed by using well-established specific antibodies against c-Met and IGF-1R. The intercorrelation of receptor expression and association with melanoma-related survival of patients were determined by univariate and multivariate analyses.


Whereas the expression of both IGF-1R and c-Met was significantly associated with melanoma-specific mortality by univariate analysis (P = 0.004 and P = 0.007, respectively) only IGF-1R showed independent prognostic value by multivariate analysis, P = 0.004. The prognostic value of IGF-1R was stronger than such currently used prognostic parameters as tumor cell type and tumor diameter (P = 0.021 and P = 0.026, respectively). The expression patterns of the two growth factors receptors were weakly intercorrelated.


In conclusion, the data suggest that the receptors for IGF-1 and HGF/SF may play a role in the spread of uveal melanoma and its affinity to the liver. The strong correlation between IGF-1R expression and melanoma-specific mortality points to the use of IGF-1R as a prognostic tool.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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