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Histopathology. 2010 Feb;56(3):319-30. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2559.2010.03479.x.

Clinicopathological correlates and prognostic significance of maspin expression in 450 patients after potentially curative resection of node-positive colonic cancer.

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Department of Anatomical Pathology, Concord Hospital, and Discipline of Pathology, The University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.



The tumour suppressor maspin has been investigated for its association with conventional histopathological features in colorectal cancer and for its potential as an independent predictor of survival and response to adjuvant chemotherapy. The aim of this study was to examine associations between maspin expression, other histopathology and survival in a large consecutive series of patients after potentially curative resection of node-positive colonic adenocarcinoma.


Nuclear and cytoplasmic maspin expression in both superficial and deep parts of the tumour were assessed retrospectively by tissue microarray and immunohistochemistry in specimens from 450 patients whose other histopathology had been recorded in a prospective hospital registry of large bowel cancer resections from 1971 to 2001 with a minimum follow-up of 5 years. Among 13 clinicopathological features examined, the only associations that persisted across all four maspin assessments were stronger expression in right- than in left-sided tumours (P=0.001-0.011) and stronger expression in high-grade tumours (P<0.001-0.007). There was no significant association between intensity of maspin expression and overall survival.


In this large and thoroughly documented series of patients with clinicopathological stage C colonic tumour, maspin expression was correlated with few other conventional histopathology variables and was not a significant prognostic factor.

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