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J Gastroenterol. 2008;43(12):959-66. doi: 10.1007/s00535-008-2255-9. Epub 2008 Dec 24.

Microvessel density correlates with lymph node metastases and prognosis in hilar cholangiocarcinoma.

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1
Department of General, Visceral and Transplantation Surgery, Charité Universitaetsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Neovascularization was shown to be critically involved in the progression of multiple cancers, and treatment approaches targeting tumor-associated neovascularization provide convincing results in recent years in some tumor entities. However, little is known about the tumor-associated neovascularization in hilar cholangiocarcinoma. The present study was conducted to analyze tumor-associated neovascularization in hilar cholangiocarcinoma and to determine its influence on tumor growth, metastasis, recurrence, and prognosis.

METHODS:

We analyzed tissue specimens of hilar cholangiocarcinoma (n = 60) by immunohistochemistry using the endothelial-specific antibody CD31 and subsequently quantified the microvessel density (MVD). The MVD was correlated with clinicopathological characteristics and recurrence pattern of the tumors as well as survival of patients.

RESULTS:

Hilar cholangiocarcinoma revealed a high degree of vascularization, with a calculated mean MVD of 28.1 +/- 14.5 vessels. Tumors with a high MVD had a significant higher incidence of lymph node involvement (P = 0.009) and local recurrence (P < 0.001). Furthermore, a high MVD was identified to be a significant overall survival disadvantage (3-year, 28% vs. 93%; 5-year, 8% vs. 78%; P < 0.001) as well as disease-free survival disadvantage (3-year, 7% vs. 88%, 5-year, 7% vs. 72%; P < 0.001), with MVD representing an independent prognostic factor for survival.

CONCLUSIONS:

Neovascularization is associated with nodal spread as well as local recurrence and serves as an independent prognostic factor for survival after curative resection of hilar cholangiocarcinoma. Therefore, tumor-associated neovascularization seems to be critically involved in the progression of this tumor entity. In addition, neovascularization may represent a potential target in he development of new therapeutic approaches in hilar cholangiocarcinoma.

PMID:
19107340
DOI:
10.1007/s00535-008-2255-9
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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