European Journal of Dermatology

, Volume 27, Issue 6, pp 627–634 | Cite as

Comparative study of the clinical, histological, and biological characteristics of squamous cell carcinomas in areas previously treated with photodynamic therapy

  • Tamara Gracia CazañaEmail author
  • Nerea Salazar
  • Jesús Vera-Álvarez
  • Salvador González
  • Angeles Juarranz
  • Yolanda Gilaberte
Clinical report



Although photodynamic therapy (PDT) is an effective treatment option for non-melanoma skin cancer, the development of aggressive tumours in PDT-treated areas has been described.


To evaluate the clinical, histological, and biological characteristics of squamous cell carcinomas (SCCs) in areas previously treated with PDT vs those arising in areas never treated with this therapeutic modality.

Materials & methods

Aretrospective observational studywas designed. We collected all cases of invasive SCCs in areas previously treated with PDT. The control group consisted of an equivalent number of SCCs randomly selected from the database of our pathology department. Expression of specific markers implicated in SCC progression, including p53, Ki67, COX-2, cyclin D1, E-cadherin, EGFR, survivin, and pERK, was analysed.


A total of 699 patients were treated with PDT for non-melanoma skin cancer during the course of the study. Ten invasive SCCs arising in areas previously treated with methylaminolevulinate-PDT were diagnosed in six patients. The control group consisted of 10 invasive SCCs from 10 patients never treated with PDT. In the PDT group, the mean tumour size was significantly lower and the absence of ulceration was more frequent than in the control group (p<0.024 and p = 0.035, respectively). Adiffuse survivin staining pattern was observed in 90% of tumours in the PDT group versus 50% in the comparative group (p = 0.141).


The number of SCCs arising in areas previously treated with PDT was very low and did not differ significantly from that of SCCs developing in non-PDT-treated areas.

Key words

photodynamic therapy non-melanoma skin cancer squamous cell carcinomas p53 Ki67 COX-2 cyclin D1 E-cadherin EGFR survivin pERK 


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Copyright information

© JLE/Springer 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tamara Gracia Cazaña
    • 1
    Email author
  • Nerea Salazar
    • 2
  • Jesús Vera-Álvarez
    • 3
  • Salvador González
    • 4
  • Angeles Juarranz
    • 2
  • Yolanda Gilaberte
    • 5
  1. 1.Dermatology ServiceHospital de BarbastroHuescaSpain
  2. 2.Biology DepartmentUniversidad Autónoma de MadridMadridSpain
  3. 3.Pathology ServiceHospital San JorgeHuescaSpain
  4. 4.Dermatology ServiceMemorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer CenterNew YorkUSA
  5. 5.Dermatology ServiceHospital San JorgeHuescaSpain

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