The mechanism(s) responsible for the progression of non-metastatic or borderline ovarian cancer to invasive Grade I/III ovarian cancer is still unknown. An epithelium-restricted integrin, αvβ6, is present in malignant epithelia but not in normal epithelia. We studied the relative expression and distribution of αvβ6 integrin in early and late-stage invasive (Grade I and Grade III) and non-invasive (benign and borderline) ovarian tumors of serous, mucinous, endometrioid, and clear-cell carcinoma subtypes, to assess its potential as a marker for epithelial ovarian cancer progression. Sixty-six specimens, including eight normal, 13 benign, 14 borderline, 13 Grade I, and 18 Grade III tumors were evaluated by immunohistochemistry (IHC) using a monoclonal antibody (MAb) against αvβ6 integrin. Normal ovarian surface epithelium was negative for αvβ6 integrin expression. All 45 carcinomas studied were positive, and the staining intensity significantly correlated with the grade of the tumor. The Grade III carcinomas of all types showed strong staining intensity. Only mucinous benign tissues were positive, and no reactivity was observed in benign serous neoplasms. On the basis of these observations, we hypothesize that the expression of αvβ6 integrin is associated with epithelial ovarian cancer and that a gradual increase in the expression of the molecule may be a correlative index of the progression of this disease.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Journal of Histochemistry and Cytochemistry|
|Publication status||Published - Oct 2002|
- αβ integrin
- Epithelial cells
- Ovarian cancer