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Cell Oncol. 2007;29(3):219-27.

Hypoxia and angiogenesis in endometrioid endometrial carcinogenesis.

Author information

1
Department of Surgical Gynecology and Oncology, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Hypoxia-inducible factor 1alpha (HIF-1alpha) plays an essential role in the adaptive response of cells to hypoxia, triggering biologic events associated with aggressive tumor behavior.

METHODS:

Expression of HIF-1alpha and proteins in the HIF-1alpha pathway (Glut-1, CAIX, VEGF) in paraffin-embedded specimens of normal (n=17), premalignant (n=17) and endometrioid endometrial carcinoma (n=39) was explored by immunohistochemistry, in relation to microvessel density (MVD).

RESULTS:

HIF-1alpha overexpression was absent in inactive endometrium but present in hyperplasia (61%) and carcinoma (87%), with increasing expression in a perinecrotic fashion pointing to underlying hypoxia. No membranous expression of Glut-1 and CAIX was noticed in inactive endometrium, in contrast with expression in hyperplasia (Glut-1 0%, CAIX 61%, only focal and diffuse) and carcinoma (Glut-1 94.6%, CAIX 92%, both mostly perinecrotically). Diffuse HIF-1alpha was accompanied by activation of downstream targets. VEGF was significantly higher expressed in hyperplasias and carcinomas compared to inactive endometrium. MVD was higher in hyperplasias and carcinomas than in normal endometrium (p<0.001).

CONCLUSION:

HIF-1alpha and its downstream genes are increasingly expressed from normal through premalignant to endometrioid adenocarcinoma of the endometrium, paralleled by activation of its downstream genes and increased angiogenesis. This underlines the potential importance of hypoxia and its key regulator HIF-1alpha in endometrial carcinogenesis.

PMID:
17452774
PMCID:
PMC4618415
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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