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Fibroblast Growth Factor Receptor 2 Is Associated With Poor Overall Survival in Clear Cell Carcinoma of the Ovary and May Be a Novel Therapeutic Approach
  1. Hiroaki Itamochi, PhD*,
  2. Nao Oumi, PhD*,
  3. Tetsuro Oishi, PhD*,
  4. Fuminori Taniguchi, PhD*,
  5. Tadahiro Shoji, PhD,
  6. Hiroyuki Fujiwara, PhD,
  7. Toru Sugiyama, PhD,
  8. Mitsuaki Suzuki, PhD,
  9. Junzo Kigawa, PhD§ and
  10. Tasuku Harada, PhD*
  1. *Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Tottori University School of Medicine, Yonago-City, Tottori, Japan;
  2. Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Iwate Medical University, Morioka-City, Iwate, Japan;
  3. Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Jichi Medical University, Shimotsuke-City, Tochigi, Japan; and
  4. §Matsue City Hospital, Matsue-City, Shimane, Japan.
  1. Address correspondence and reprint requests to Hiroaki Itamochi, MD, PhD, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Tottori University School of Medicine, 36-1 Nishicho, Yonago-City, Tottori 683-8504, Japan. E-mail: itamochi{at}


Objective We previously found that gene and protein expression of fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR) 2 were increased in ovarian clear cell carcinoma (CCC); here, we examined FGFR2 expression in CCC tumor tissues and its correlation with clinical parameters. We also analyzed the effect of an FGFR inhibitor on the growth of CCC cells to investigate whether FGFR2 could be a therapeutic target for this disease.

Methods We analyze the protein expression of FGFR2 by immunohistochemical staining in CCC from 112 patients and evaluated the association of these molecular parameters with clinical outcome. We treated the 11 CCC cell lines with an FGFR inhibitor, and then assessed cell viability, the expression of protein in FGFR2 signaling pathway, and cell cycle distribution.

Results The expressions of FGFR2 were found in 96% of CCC. The 5-year survival rate for patients with a moderate or strong expression of FGFR2 was significantly lower than that for those with an absent or poor expression of FGFR2 (54% vs 79%). Multivariable analysis revealed that FGFR2 expression and disease stage were independent prognostic factors. The FGFR inhibitor effectively suppressed the growth of CCC cells with induction of G1 cell cycle arrest and down-regulated the expression of phosphorylated Akt and phosphorylated ERK.

Conclusions FGFR2 is an important biomarker predictive of patient outcome and is a potential target for CCC. Further study is warranted for FGFR inhibitor to treat CCC.

  • Clear cell
  • Ovarian carcinoma
  • FGFR2
  • Biomarker
  • Molecular target therapy

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  • This work was supported by a Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan (17244120 to H. Itamochi).

  • The authors declare no conflicts of interest.