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Br J Cancer. 1996 Dec;74(11):1801-4.

MHC class I antigens and tumour-infiltrating leucocytes in laryngeal cancer: long-term follow-up.

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  • 1Servicio de Otorrinolaringologia, Hospital Universitario Virgen de Valme, Seville, Spain.


Alteration in MHC class I expression may be used by cancer cells to avoid immune destruction. Much experimental evidence supports this idea, although survival studies are very scarce. To investigate whether the presence or absence of HLA-A, -B and -C antigens in laryngeal carcinoma influences survival, a series of 60 primary laryngeal tumours treated surgically and normal tissues were evaluated in frozen sections for the expression of MHC class I antigens and tumour-infiltrating leucocytes (CD3, CD4, CD8, CD11b, CD1, CD20 and CD16), using monoclonal antibodies and the APAAP, technique. Long-term follow-up from the patients is available, ranging from 6 to 10 years. Thirteen tumours presented total HLA-ABC loss, five selective losses of HLA-A antigens and one absence of HLA-B antigens. Total losses were statistically associated with several clinical and pathological parameters, but there were no differences regarding tumour-infiltrating leucocytes. After conducting a prospective study, only T and N staging and scoring according to Glanz's malignancy classification were found to be independently related to patients' outcome. From our data, we conclude that neither complete loss of HLA class I antigens nor tumour-infiltrating leucocytes appear to influence survival in squamous cell carcinoma of the larynx.

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