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J Vet Intern Med. 2006 Jan-Feb;20(1):151-8.

Canine mast cell tumors: correlation of apoptosis and proliferation markers with prognosis.

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1
Oncology Research Group, Animal Health Trust, Lanwades Park, Kentford, Newmarket, United Kingdom. tim.scase@aht.org.uk

Abstract

The Patnaik histologic grading system is commonly used to predict the behavior of cutaneous mast cell tumors (MCTs) in dogs, but it is less useful for grade 2 MCTs because they exhibit considerable variation in biological behavior. In this retrospective study, immunohistochemical staining for Ki-67, proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), and survivin and a standardized argyrophilic staining of nucleolar organizer regions (AgNOR) protocol were performed on 121 archived paraffin-embedded specimens of canine cutaneous MCTs, for which clinical follow-up data were available. Cox regression models indicated that the Ki-67 score (hazard ratio, 1.92; P < .001) and mean AgNOR score (hazard ratio, 2.57; P < .001) were significantly associated with Patnaik grade and survival time. A binary Ki-67 variable (cutoff point Ki-67 score = 1.8) was a significant predictor of survival for dogs with grade 2 MCTs. The estimated 1-, 2-, and 3-year survival probabilities for dogs with grade 2 MCTs and Ki-67 scores less than 1.8 were 0.92, 0.86, and 0.77, respectively (SEs, 0.08, 0.14, and 0.23, respectively; median not estimable). The corresponding survival probabilities for dogs with grade 2 MCTs and Ki-67 scores higher than 1.8 were 0.43, 0.21, and 0.21, respectively (SEs, 0.19, 0.18, and 0.18, respectively; median survival time, 395 days). No significant association was identified between survival and survivin score or PCNA score. This study shows that both mean AgNOR score and Ki-67 score are prognostic markers for canine MCTs. The Ki-67 score can be used to divide Patnaik grade 2 MCTs into 2 groups with markedly different expected survival times.

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