International braz j urol
Print version ISSN 1677-5538
REIS, Sabrina Thalita dos et al. Immune expression of E-cadherin and α, β and γ-Catenin adhesion molecules and prognosis for upper urinary tract urothelial carcinomas. Int. braz j urol. [online]. 2012, vol.38, n.4, pp. 466-473. ISSN 1677-5538. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1677-55382012000400005.
INTRODUCTION: Cell adhesion molecules (CAM) are required for maintaining a normal epithelial phenotype, and abnormalities in CAM expression have been related to cancer progression, including bladder urothelial carcinomas. There is only one study that correlates E-cadherin and α-, β- and γ-catenin expression with prognosis of upper tract urothelial carcinomas. Our aim is to study the pattern of immune expression of these CAMs in urothelial carcinomas from the renal pelvis and ureter in patients who have been treated surgically. Our goal is to correlate these expression levels and characteristics with well-known prognostic parameters for disease-free survival. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We evaluated specimens from 20 patients with urothelial carcinomas of the renal pelvis and ureter who were treated with nephroureterectomy or ureterectomy between June 1997 and January 2007. CAM expression was evaluated by immunohistochemistry in a tissue microarray and correlated with histopathological characteristics and patient outcomes after a mean follow-up of 55 months. RESULTS: We observed a relationship between E-cadherin expression and disease recurrence. Disease recurrence occurred in 87.5% of patients with strong E-cadherin expression. Only 50.0% of patients with moderate expression and 0% of patients with weak or no expression of E-cadherin had disease recurrence (p = 0.014). There was also a difference in disease-free survival. Patients with strong E-cadherin expression had a mean disease-free survival rate of 49.1 months, compared to 83.9 months for patients with moderate expression (p = 0.011). Additionally, an absence of α-catenin expression was associated with tumors that were larger than 3 cm (p = 0.003). CONCLUSIONS: We demonstrated for the first time that immune expression of E-cadherin is related to tumor recurrence and disease-free survival rates, and the absence of α-catenin expression is related to tumor size in upper tract urothelial carcinomas.
Keywords : Urinary Tract; Carcinoma, Transitional Cell; alpha Catenin; Cadherins.