Introduction: Infection by human papillomavirus is the most important risk factor in the pathogenesis of uterine cervical cancer. The aims of this study were to evaluate the expression of survivin protein and telomerase enzyme in samples of uterine cervix from women with human papillomavirus-induced lesions and to determine the relationship between survivin and telomerase expression and the different grades of cervical squamous intraepithelial neoplasia and invasive cervical carcinoma.
Methods: Biopsy samples from the uterine cervix of 105 women aged 18 to 80 years were analyzed. The patients were divided into 5 groups: WN group, 20 patients without neoplasia; CIN-1 group, 24 patients with grade 1 cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN), grade 1; CIN-2 group, 20 patients with CIN grade 2; CIN-3 group, 24 patients with CIN, grade 3; and ICC group, 17 patients with invasive cervical carcinoma. Human papillomavirus detection, telomerase activity, and survivin expression were assessed using polymerase chain reaction (PCR), real-time PCR (RT-PCR), and immunochemistry, respectively.
Results: There was a significant increase in the expression of telomerase and survivin associated with the severity of the lesion.
Conclusions: The results suggest that mechanisms that promote both cell proliferation (telomerase activity) and cell survival (survivin expression) are active in cervical cancer and its precursor lesions. There was a negative correlation between survivin expression and the number of PCR cycles necessary to detect telomerase activity in the total sample, achieving statistical significance in patients in the CIN-3 group.
- Survivin protein
- Human papillomavirus
- Uterine cervical cancer
- Cervical intraepithelial neoplasia
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