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J Int Med Res. 2013 Aug;41(4):1002-8. doi: 10.1177/0300060513488504. Epub 2013 Jun 12.

Investigations on the clinical significance of FOXP3 protein expression in cervical oesophageal cancer and the number of FOXP3+ tumour-infiltrating lymphocytes.

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Department of Otorhinolaryngology & Head and Neck Surgery, Qilu Hospital of Shandong University, Jinan, China.



Investigations of FOXP3 protein expression in cervical oesophageal cancer cells and the number of FOXP3 + lymphocytes infiltrating tumour tissue were undertaken.


FOXP3 protein expression and FOXP3 + tumour-infiltrating lymphocytes were studied immunohistochemically, in cervical oesophageal cancer tissue samples from 42 cases and paracancerous tissue samples from 30 of these cases.


The percentage of parenchymal cells expressing FOXP3 protein was significantly higher in cancer tissue (42.9%, 18/42) than in paracancerous tissue 6.67% (two of 30). FOXP3 + lymphocyte infiltration was significantly more frequent in cancer (38.1%, 16/42) than in paracancerous (13.33%, four of 30) tissue. FOXP3 protein expression in cancer parenchymal cells in patients with lymph node metastasis was significantly greater than expression in those without lymph node metastasis. FOXP3 protein expression was significantly higher in cancer tissue samples from clinical stage III or IV than those from stage I or II disease. FOXP3 + lymphocyte infiltration of tumours was significantly greater in patients with lymph node metastasis than in those without metastasis.


Abnormal FOXP3 expression in cervical oesophageal cancer parenchyma and FOXP3 + lymphocyte infiltration might be closely related to metastasis of this cancer by promoting immune escape of the tumour. FOXP3 might be a potential marker for the assessment of postoperative metastasis in cervical oesophageal cancer.


Cervical oesophageal cancer; FOXP3; forkhead box P3; immune escape

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