Overexpression of the cell cycle inhibitor p16INK4A in high-grade prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia predicts early relapse in prostate cancer patients

Susan M. Henshall, David I. Quinn, Darren R. Head, Robert L. Sutherland, David Golovsky, Phillip C. Brenner, Phillip D. Stricker, John J. Grygiel, C. Soon Lee, Warick Delprado

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67 Citations (Scopus)


Prostate cancer (PC) is the most commonly diagnosed male cancer in industrialized societies. No molecular markers of PC progression or outcome with proven clinical utility have been described. Because the loss of normal cell cycle control is an early event in the evolution of cancer, we sought to determine whether changes in expression of the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor, p16INK4A, predicted outcome in this disease. We screened a cohort of 206 patients with clinically localized PC treated with radical prostatectomy for overexpression of the INK4A gene, the product of which inactivates the G1-phase cyclin dependent kinases, Cdk4 and Cdk6. p16INK4A protein expression was evaluated by immunohistochemistry in areas of high-grade intraepithelial neoplasia (HGPIN), a precursor to invasive disease, and of cancer in the same specimen. Data were evaluated for disease relapse using the Kaplan-Meier method and in a Cox proportional hazards model by assessing p16INK4A status in areas of HGPIN and cancer with other variables of known clinical relevance. Overexpression of p16INK4A in HGPIN and cancer was correlated with, but independent of, pathological stage and was associated with early relapse in PC patients treated with radical prostatectomy (log-rank test, P & 0.001). In a multivariate model adjusted for Gleason grade, pretreatment prostate-specific antigen levels, pathological stage, and margin status, overexpression of p16INK4A in HGPIN was an independent predictor of disease relapse and increased the risk of recurrence 2.24-fold (95% confidence interval, 1.28-3.93). These data provide the first evidence for a prognostic marker in HGPIN. The clinical utility of p16INK4A status in stratifying patients for aggressive treatment very early in the disease process, potentially several years prior to the onset of invasive disease, requires further investigation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)544-550
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Cancer Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2001


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