• 12/14/2003
  • Naples
  • British Journal of Cancer

L Lo Muzio1, G Pannone2, S Staibano2, M D Mignogna3, C Rubini4, M A Mariggiò5, M Procaccini1, F Ferrari1, G De Rosa2 and D C Altieri6

A series of 110 cases of oral squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) together with six lymph node and one distant metastatic lesions were analyzed for expression of survivin, a recent apoptosis inhibitor, by immunohistochemistry and Western blotting. In total, 91 cases (82.7%) of carcinoma and all metastasis (seven cases, 100%) were positive for survivin expression, with weighted survivin scores ranging from 1 to 4. In contrast, normal oral epithelium did not express survivin. There was no significant correlation between survivin expression and age, sex, tumor size, the presence of lymph node and distant metastases. Survivin expression was increased in poorly differentiated tumors, even if differences were not statistically significant. In contrast, when analyzed for prognostic significance, patients with low survivin expression had statistically significant better survival rates than the group with high survivin expression (P<0.05). These data suggest that survivin expression may identify cases of oral SCC with more aggressive and invasive phenotype.

1 Institute of Dental Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ancona, Ancona, Italy
2 Department of Biomorphological and Functional Sciences, Pathology Unit, Faculty of Medicine, University of Naples Federico II, Naples, Italy
3 Department of Dental Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Naples Federico II, Naples, Italy
4 Institute of Pathology, University of Ancona, Ancona, Italy
5 Department of Biomedical Sciences and Human Oncology ? Section of General Pathology and Experimental Oncology, University of Bari, Bari, Italy
6Department of Cancer Biology and the Cancer Center, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA 01605, USA

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