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Expression of apoptosis-related markers in malignant epithelial tumors of the lacrimal gland and their relation to clinical outcome
  1. Diego Strianese (strianes{at}unina.it),
  2. Gianluca Baldi,
  3. Stefania Staibano (staibano{at}unina.it),
  4. Alfonso Baldi (alfonsobaldi{at}tiscali.it),
  5. Gaetano De rosa (gaderosa{at}unina.it),
  6. Fausto Tranfa (tranfa{at}unina.it),
  7. Giulio Bonavolontà (bonavolo{at}unina.it)
  1. Department of Ophthalmology - University of Naples Federico II, Italy
  2. General Hospital of Nocera, Italy
  3. Department of Pathology - University of Naples, Italy
  4. Department of Pathology- Seconda Università di Napoli and SAFU, Regina Elena Cancer Institute, Italy
  5. Department of Pathology - University of Naples, Italy
  6. Department of Ophthalmology - University of Naples, Italy
  7. Department of Ophthalmology University of Naples, Italy

    Abstract

    Objective: To investigate the correlation between the expression of apoptosis-related markers and prognosis in malignant epithelial tumors of the lacrimal gland.

    Materials and methods: Series of cases.

    Participants: 21 cases with malignant epithelial tumors of the lacrimal gland. Histological diagnosis was reexamined and blocks selected were evaluated for the following parameters: incidence of apoptosis with TUNEL assay , expression of p53 and bcl-2 using monoclonal antibody. Predictors factors for survival, local recurrence and cumulative probability of death were statistically evaluated.

    Results: Reaximination of the 21 specimens was as follow: 11 adenoid cystic carcinomas, 4 mucoepidermoid carcinomas, 3 squamous cell carcinomas and 3 adenocarcinomas. Eleven of the 21 patients (53%) died during the follow-up period (4 - 192 months; mean 71.). Bcl-2 staining >10% was significantly correlated with the death of the patients. Statistically significant positive relationship for TUNEL and p53, while an inverse correlation for Bcl-2 staining was demonstrated with overall survival .

    Conclusion: The correlation with survival of apoptotic index, p53 and Bcl-2 expression suggest the more tumor cells go in apoptosis, upregulating p53 and down-regulating Bcl-2, the better is the survival of the patients. This study establishes a role of apoptosis-regulatory proteins in the pathogenesis of malignant epithelial lacrimal gland tumors and make plausible the hypothesis that the evaluation of the expression of apoptosis-related markers in these tumors may provide a prognostic tool.

    • adenoid cystic carcinoma
    • apoptosis
    • lacrimal gland carcinoma
    • malignant tumor
    • prognosis

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