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Glutathione S-transferase GSTM1 and GSTT1 genotypes in ovarian cancer: association with p53 expression and survival
  1. R. E. J. Howells,
  2. T. Holland,
  3. K. K. Dhar,
  4. C. W. E. Redman,
  5. P. Hand,
  6. P. R. Hoban,
  7. P. W. Jones,
  8. A. A. Fryer and
  9. R. C. Strange
  1. Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology North Staffordshire Hospital, Department of Mathematics, Keele University and Centre for Cell and Molecular Medicine, School of Postgraduate Medicine, Keele University, North Staffordshire Hospital, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England.
  1. Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Robert E J Howells, Welsh Regional Center for Gynaecological oncology, University of Wales College of Medicine, Heath Park, Cardiff, Wales, CF4 4HX. Email: Rejhow{at}


The objective of this study was to determine whether the association between GSTM1 null/GSTTI null and survival in ovarian cancer is mediated by the influence of these genes on p53 expression. In 81 women with pure invasive ovarian cancer, GSTM1 null and GSTT1 null genotypes were identified using polymerase chain reaction and p53 expression was assessed using immunohistochemistry. The association of these factors with survival was examined using Cox's proportional hazards regression models.

Performance status (P < 0.001), operative stage (P = 0.004), residual disease (P = 0.001), histologic subtype (P = 0.05), tumor grade (P = 0.007), and the combined GSTMI null/GSTTl null genotype (P = 0.023) were all individually associated with survival. p53 expression was not associated with survival (P = 0.45). In a multivariate analysis, the effects of GSTM1 null/GSTT1 null on survival were lost when residual disease and tumor grade were included. The effects of p53 expression on survival were unchanged when residual disease, tumor grade, operative stage, and performance score were included. GSTM1 null/GSTT1null did not influence the effects of p53 expression on survival and vice versa. The GSTM1 null/GSTT1 null genotype was associated with response to primary chemotherapy (P = 0.007) but p53 expression was not. We conclude that the association of GSTM1 null/GSTTl null with survival appears to be mediated through different mechanisms to p53 expression in ovarian cancer and in addition, may be a better predictor of outcome.

  • epithelial ovarian cancer
  • glutathione S-transferases
  • oxidative stress
  • p53 expression
  • survival

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