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Res Vet Sci. 2006 Oct;81(2):231-6. Epub 2006 Jan 19.

Androgen receptor expression in normal, hyperplastic and neoplastic hepatoid glands in the dog.

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Centro Veterinario, Via Borgolo, 15, 19033 Molicciara, SP, Italy.


Neoplasms of the perianal glands are common in the dog, particularly in the male. The occurrence of these tumours appears to be hormone related and castration, without excision of the tumour, has sometimes resulted in regression of the tumour. The aim of this study was to investigate the expression of androgen receptors (AR) in normal, hyperplastic and neoplastic hepatoid glands in the dog. Thirty-one samples of canine hepatoid gland tissues were investigated. The lesions, classified according to WHO criteria, were comprised of 19 hyperplastic tissues, 10 benign lesions (2 hepatoid gland epithelioma and 8 hepatoid adenomas), and 19 carcinomas. Five samples from normal hepatoid glands were also investigated. The AR expression was evaluated by immunohistochemistry using a streptavidin-biotin peroxidase method. The immunoexpression was scored by two pathologists as the percentage of positive nuclei. The intensity of staining was also considered. AR expression was detected in all normal and abnormal glands. However, in hyperplastic tissues the percentage of positive nuclei was significantly higher than in normal tissue and especially in reserve basaloid cells. A similar increase in the percent of positive nuclei was also observed in hepatoid epitheliomas, while in hepatoid adenoma the percent of AR-immunolabelling was only slightly increased compared to normal tissue. In hepatoid carcinomas the percent of AR-positive cells was similar to that observed in benign tumours. The grade of differentiation of hepatoid carcinomas did not affect AR expression. These results demonstrate that increased AR expression is maintained throughout perianal gland cancer progression and that hepatoid gland carcinomas still express AR. Although further studies may be required to evaluate the hormonal background of these diseases, dogs bearing those carcinomas might benefit from castration or anti hormonal therapy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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