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J Korean Cancer Assoc > Volume 31(4); 1999 > Article
Journal of the Korean Cancer Association 1999;31(4): 802-810.
Immunohistochemical Expression of CD34 and Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor in Hepatocellular Carcinoma
Yeong Ok Kim, Bang Hur
Department of Pathology, Kosin University Medical Center, Pusan, Korea.
Angiogenesis plays an important role in progression, invasion and metastasis of solid tumors. The Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) is thought to be a selective mitogen for endothelial cells. Hepatocellular carcinoma is a typical hypervascular tumor. However, the relationship between angiogenesis and angiogenic factor in hepatocellular carcinoma has not been evaluated. We investigated the relationship between microvessel density (MVD) and expression of VEGF in hepatocellular carcinoma.
Immunohistochemlcal staining, using anti-CD34 and anti-VEGF antibodies, was applied in 32 cases of hepatocellular carcinoma. Also, relationship between these neovascular factors (MVD and VEGF expression) and clinicopathologic parameters such as tumor size, bistologic grade, alpha-fetoprotein level, hepatitis B virus surface antigen, presence of cirrhosis and survival was evaluated.
CD34 was reactive throughout the neoplastic tissue, albeit it was confined to a few periportal sinusoids and vessels in fibrous septa of adjacent cirrhotic liver. MVD was 59.6+22.7 and 44.3+21.5 in hepatocellular carcinoma and cirrhosis, respectively. VEGF was expressed in 9 cases (28.1%) of hepatocellular carcinoma, which was localized to the cytoplasm. MVD and VEGF expression was not significantly correlated (P>0.05). MVD was correlated with presence of cirrhosis and inversely conelated with alpha- fetoprotein level (p<0.05). MVD was not correlated with tumor size, presence of HBs antigen, histologic grade and survival (P>0.05). Expression of VEGF was not correlated with all clinicopathologic parameters (P>0.05).
These results indicate that MVD in hepatocellular carcinoma is not directly correlated with VEGF expression, and suggest that other angiogenic factor may be involved in neovascularization of hepatocellular carcinoma. However, CD34 expression is closely associated with neovascular process in cirrhosis and hepatocelluar carcinoma.
Key words: Hepatocellular carcinoma;CD34;Vascular endothelial growth factor;Immunohistochemistry
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