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Virchows Archiv

, Volume 432, Issue 5, pp 441–444 | Cite as

Bcl-2 protein and prognosis in patients with potentially curable non-small-cell lung cancer

  • R. Silvestrini
  • Aurora Costa
  • Cosimo Lequaglie
  • Claudia Mochen
  • Silvia Veneroni
  • Monica Leutner
  • Gianni Ravasi
ORIGINAL ARTICLE

Abstract

 The bcl-2 proto-oncogene functions as a cell death suppressor, and its expression prolongs cell survival by blocking apoptosis. Data available on the clinical relevance of bcl-2 protein expression in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) are controversial. We analysed the role of bcl-2 protein expression on 6-year relapse-free survival in 229 patients with stage I-IIIa NSCLC (101 squamous cell carcinomas and 128 adenocarcinomas) subjected to surgery, with curative intent. Immunohistochemical analysis was performed on archival material by using a monoclonal antibody anti-bcl-2 (clone 124). Bcl-2 protein expression, which was detected in 22% of the cases, was significantly related to stage, histology and grading, and was an indicator of clinical outcome. The probability of relapse-free survival at 6 years was longer for patients with bcl-2-positive tumours (74%) than for those with bcl-2-negative tumours (57%) (P=0.02). This finding was mainly evident for the subgroups of patients with stage IIIa tumours (P=0.05), squamous cell carcinoma (P=0.03) or moderately/poorly differentiated tumours (P=0.02). However, multivariate analysis by Weibull’s regression model indicated that bcl-2 protein expression was not an independent prognostic risk factor in patients with curable NSCLC when the information provided by stage was available.

Key words bcl-2 expression Operable lung cancer Prognostic factor Relapse-free survival 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Silvestrini
    • 1
  • Aurora Costa
    • 1
  • Cosimo Lequaglie
    • 2
  • Claudia Mochen
    • 1
  • Silvia Veneroni
    • 1
  • Monica Leutner
    • 3
  • Gianni Ravasi
    • 2
  1. 1.Oncologia Sperimentale C, Istituto Nazionale per lo Studio e la Cura dei Tumori, Via Venezian 1, I-20133 Milan, ItalyIT
  2. 2.Oncologia Chirurgica Toracica, Istituto Nazionale per lo Studio e la Cura dei Tumori, Milan, ItalyIT
  3. 3.Anatomia Patologica e Citopatologia, Istituto Nazionale per lo Studio e la Cura dei Tumori, Milan, ItalyIT

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