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Oral Oncol. 2007 Feb;43(2):193-8. Epub 2006 Jul 18.

High EGFR expression predicts poor prognosis in patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the oral cavity and oropharynx: a TMA-based immunohistochemical analysis.

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1
Division of Maxillofacial Surgery, Innsbruck Medical University, Anichstrasse 35, A-6020 Innsbruck, Austria. klaus.laimer@chello.at

Abstract

This retrospective study was designed to investigate the prognostic significance of EGFR overexpression in human oral squamous cell carcinoma on a long-term follow-up. EGFR expression was examined immunohistochemically on a tissue microarray (TMA) of paraffin embedded tissue specimens from 109 patients who underwent surgical treatment for squamous cell carcinoma of the oral cavity and oropharynx in the period between 1980 and 1997. High EGFR expression was found in 80 (73.42%) of the tumour samples. Kaplan-Meier curves showed that EGFR overexpression was significantly related to decreased overall survival (p=0.05). Multivariate analysis showed that EGFR overexpression is an independent prognostic marker in these patients (p=0.02, RR 3.6). These results confirm that EGFR overexpression is an independent prognostic marker in patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the oral cavity and oropharynx. The EGFR antigen represents an attractive target for targeted therapies with monoclonal antibodies or specific tyrosine-kinase inhibitors in these patients.

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