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Int J Mol Med. 1998 May;1(5):823-6.

p53 alteration, proliferating cell nuclear antigen, and nucleolar organizer regions in thymic epithelial tumors.

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VCC, 649 Medical Research Building II, Carbone LAB (648), Nashville, TN 37232-6838, USA.


We examined p53 protein expression, p53 gene mutation, proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), and argyrophilic nuclear organizer regions (AgNOR), in 30 patients with surgically-treated thymic tumors (26 thymoma and 4 thymic carcinoma cases). p53 expression ratio with DO-1 was divided as p53 negative (0% positivity), low expressor (<10% positivity), high expressor (>10% positivity). The incidence of p53 low and high expressor in thymoma were 19% (5/26) and 8% (2/26), respectively. p53 immunopositivity in thymoma was significantly correlated with PCNA labeling index (LI). p53 expression ratio in invasive thymoma (33%) tended to be higher than that in non-invasive thymoma (18%). p53 expression was detected in one of the thymic carcinoma. There were no p53 gene mutations in 15 invasive thymoma, although one of four (25%) thymic carcinomas showed two point mutations. p53 gene alterations seem to be associated with malignant activity of tumor cells, and therefore detection of p53 gene mutations is useful as a diagnostic factor.

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