Evaluation of Expression of Apoptosis-Related Proteins and Their Correlation with HPV, Telomerase Activity, and Apoptotic Index in Cervical CancerSingh A.a · Sharma H.a · Salhan S.d · Datta Gupta S.c · Bhatla N.b · Jain S.K.b · Singh N.a
Departments of aBiochemistry, bObstetrics and Gynaecology and cPathology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, and dDepartment of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Safdarjung Hospital, New Delhi, India
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Objective: The aim of this study was to examine the expression of apoptosis-related proteins in cervical cancer, and investigate their correlation with the apoptotic index (AI), telomerase activity, human papilloma virus (HPV) infection and clinicopathological characteristics. Methods: Fifty cervical cancer samples and 20 normal cervical tissues were assessed for the protein expression of survivin, Bcl-2, Cox-2, p53 and p73 by immunohistochemistry. HPV DNA was detected by PCR, telomerase activity by PCR-ELISA, and AI by TUNEL assay. Results: 46/50 cervical tumors (92%) showed an increased telomerase activity as compared to 3/20 (15%) controls. 45/50 (90%) cervical tumors were positive for HPV, of which 30 were HPV-16 positive and 5 were HPV-18 positive. 24/50 (48%) tumors were positive for survivin, 14 (28%) for Bcl-2, 13 (26%) for Cox-2, 19/45 (42%) for p73, 10/45 (24%) for p53. Telomerase activity was highest in tumors with the poorest grade. A positive correlation was seen between survivin and Bcl-2, survivin and tumor stage, Bcl-2 and Cox-2, p73 and p53 and p73 and the AI. Despite the overexpression of various antiapoptotic proteins, no significant difference was observed in the AI between tumors and controls. Conclusions: Since deregulation of the apoptotic pathway appears to occur in cervical cancer, some apoptosis-related proteins could be assessed as potential markers for progression/prognosis in cervical cancer. Additionally, newer proteins such as p73 may play a compensatory role for the nonfunctional proteins such as p53.
© 2004 S. Karger AG, Basel
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