Send to

Choose Destination
Cancer. 1996 Aug 1;78(3):433-40.

Evaluation of the prognostic significance of cathepsin D, epidermal growth factor receptor, and c-erbB-2 in early cervical squamous cell carcinoma. An immunohistochemical study.

Author information

Department of Gynecologic Oncology, The Norwegian Radium Hospital, Oslo, Norway.



This study evaluated the prognostic significance of immunohistochemical staining for cathepsin D, epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), and c-erbB-2 in patients with early cervical squamous cell carcinoma.


This retrospective analysis comprised 132 patients, all subjected to radical hysterectomy with bilateral pelvic lymphadenectomy for International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO) Stage IB cervical squamous cell carcinoma. Immunohistochemical staining was correlated with various histopathologic and morphologic characteristics (i.e., tumor size, grade of differentiation, vessel invasion, invasion into parametria, and lymph node metastasis) and relapse free survival.


Positive staining for cathepsin D was observed in 47% of tumors, more frequent in tumors giving rise to lymph node metastases. The relapse free survival was lower for patients with cathepsin D positive tumors. Overexpression of EGFR was observed in 25.8% of the tumors. There was no correlation with any of the histopathologic variables investigated. Relapse free survival was lower for patients with tumors overexpressing EGFR. Immunohistochemical staining for c-erbB-2 was observed in 12.1% of tumors with no correlation with relapse free survival. In multivariate analysis, immunostaining of cathepsin D and EGFR obtained independent prognostic significance, and considered together (both negative, one positive, or both positive) was the strongest prognostic factor after tumor size.


Immunohistochemical staining for cathepsin D and EGFR is useful as a tool for evaluation of tumor aggressiveness in patients with early cervical squamous cell carcinoma.

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center