The study objective was to determine the prognostic value of assessment of staining of p53 and bcl-2 in a well-selected group of serous ovarian carcinomas. Immunohistochemical detection was used to identify both p53 and bcl-2 positive tumors. One hundred thirty-two tumors were analyzed for positivity of staining, grade of staining intensity, and for p53 alone, percent expression rates. These were analyzed alongside traditional clinicopathologic parameters for their ability to predict overall survival (OS), disease-free survival (DFS), and response to chemotherapy (CR). Univariate COX analysis revealed percent p53 expression (P= 0.012) and p53 grade (P= 0.01) to be significant predictors of DFS. Neither the p53 nor bcl-2 measurement parameters were found significant for OS or prediction of CR. On multivariate analysis, incorporating clinicopathologic parameters, p53 parameters did not retain independent significance for any outcome measure. As in primary reported studies, bcl-2 was not found to be of clear independent prognostic value in this group of ovarian tumors. If mutation of p53 and its consequent overexpression is an early event in ovarian tumorigenesis, then p53 assessment may prove useful prognostically in the assessment of either low-grade ovarian carcinomas, as a possible indicator for progression, or in early-stage ovarian tumors, as a marker of tumor aggression or likelihood of recurrence. p53 analysis of a larger group of stage I ovarian tumors would be desirable to further explain the potential association with DFS.
- apoptotic markers
- serous ovarian carcinoma
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