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Vol. 67, No. 3-4, 2004
Issue release date: November 2004
Oncology 2004;67:262–270

The Prognostic Relevance of Fascin Expression in Human Gastric Carcinoma

Hashimoto Y. · Shimada Y. · Kawamura J. · Yamasaki S. · Imamura M.
Department of Surgery and Surgical Basic Science, Graduate School of Medicine, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan

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Objective: Fascin, an actin-bundling protein that is found in membrane ruffles, microspikes, and stress fibers, induces membrane protrusions and increases cell motility in various transformed cells. The expression of fascin in epithelial neoplasms has been described only recently, and its role in gastric cancer is still unknown. Methods: Paraffin sections of gastric carcinoma from 214 patients were immunohistochemically investigated using monoclonal antifascin antibody. Staining more than 5% of tumor cells was recorded as positive immunoreactivity. Results: Overall, fascin immunoreactivity was detected in 54 out of a total of 214 patients (25%). 26 patients were classified as 1+ (5–25% immunoreactive tumor cells) and 28 were 2+ (>25%). In these patients, 7 tumors showed high (>75%) fascin immunoreactivity. Increased immunoreactivity of fascin was sometimes seen at the edge of the tumor. Fascin immunoreactivity was increased according to the extent of primary tumor (p = 0.026). Fascin expression was correlated with age (p = 0.005), serosal invasion (p = 0.013), positive lymph node metastasis (p = 0.006), histopathological grading (p = 0.019), TNM stage (p = 0.003) and recurrence (p = 0.006); however, it was not correlated with distant metastasis (p = 0.108), Lauren’s type (p = 0.205), or R classification (p = 0.056). Among 166 patients with T1, T2, T3 or T4, those with fascin-positive tumors had a significantly poorer prognosis than those with fascin-negative tumors (p = 0.029). Multivariate analysis showed that fascin expression was not an independent poor prognostic factor. Conclusion: Our findings suggest that the immunohistochemical detection of fascin could provide useful information as one of the prognostic factors in gastric cancer patients.

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