Expression of focal adhesion kinase in patients with endometrial cancer: a clinicopathologic study.

Authors:
Dr. Marzenna Orlowska-Volk, MD
Dr. Marzenna Orlowska-Volk, MD
Freiburg University Medical Center
Dr.
Gynekopathology, Oncology
Freiburg, Baden W├╝ttenberg | Germany

Int J Gynecol Cancer 2009 Oct;19(7):1221-5

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Freiburg University Medical Center, Freiburg, Germany.

Introduction: The pp125 focal adhesion kinase (FAK) plays a pivotal role in tumor cell signaling. Focal adhesion kinase expression has been linked to tumor cell proliferation, invasion, and metastasis, but data on endometrial cancer are inconclusive.

Methods: We assess FAK expression by immunohistochemistry in endometrial cancer for its value to predict patient prognosis.

Results: Of 134 endometrial cancer cases, 120 (89%) revealed moderate and strong expressions of FAK, whereas weak expression was found in 14 (11%) tumors. Kaplan-Meier analysis indicated a clear trend toward improved survival rates for patients with endometrial carcinomas weakly expressing FAK, and notably, there was neither lymph node metastasis nor tumor-related death in this patient subgroup. Increased expression of FAK correlated with higher histological tumor grade (P = 0.002), lymphatic vascular space invasion (P = 0.003), and vascular space invasion (P = 0.02). Significant prognostic survival variables were tumor stage (P < 0.01), histological type (P < 0.01), tumor grade (P = 0.028), and pelvic lymph node status (P = 0.035). Multivariate Cox regression analysis identified histological tumor grade as a significant independent predictor of patient survival (hazards ratio, 2.71; P = 0.03).

Conclusions: Further studies are warranted to elucidate whether FAK expression analysis is a suitable tool in stratifying patients at different risks of disease progress, and wether FAK might become a new molecular target for endometrial anticancer therapy.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/IGC.0b013e3181b33c61DOI Listing
October 2009
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