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Down-regulated nucleoside diphosphate kinase nm23-H1 expression is unrelated to high-risk human papillomavirus but associated with progression of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia and unfavourable prognosis in cervical cancer
  1. M Branca1,
  2. C Giorgi2,
  3. M Ciotti3,
  4. D Santini4,
  5. L Di Bonito5,
  6. S Costa4,
  7. A Benedetto3,
  8. D Bonifacio5,
  9. P Di Bonito2,
  10. P Paba3,
  11. L Accardi2,
  12. L Mariani6,
  13. M Ruutu7,
  14. C Favalli3,
  15. K Syrjänen1,
  16. on behalf of the HPV-Pathogen Istituto Superiore di Sanità Study Group*
  1. 1Unità Citoistopatologia, Centro Nazionale di Epidemiologia, Sorveglianza e Promozione della Salute, Istituto Superiore di Sanità (ISS), Rome, Italy
  2. 2Department of Infectious, Parasitic and Immunomediated Diseases, ISS
  3. 3Laboratory of Clinical Microbiology and Virology, University Hospital “Policlinico Tor Vergata”, Rome
  4. 4Dipertimento di Ginecologia e Ostetrica, Azienda Ospedaliera S. Orsola Malpighi, Bologna, Italy
  5. 5UCO Anatomia Patologica, Istopatologia e Citodiagnostica, Ospedale Maggiore, Trieste, Italy
  6. 6Ginecologia e Ostetrica, IFO, Istituto Regina Elena, Rome
  7. 7Department of Oral Pathology, Institute of Dentistry, University of Turku, Turku, Finland
  1. Correspondence to:
 K Syrjänen
 Department of Oncology & Radiotherapy, Turku University Central Hospital, Savitehtaankatu 1, FIN-20521 Turku, Finland; kari.syrjanen{at}tyks.fi

Abstract

Objective: One of the factors leading to an invasive phenotype is the nm23 family of metastases-associated genes. Of the six known members, nm23-H1 is the most frequently studied potential anti-metastatic gene in cervical cancer. However, the possible molecular links to oncogenic human papillomavirus (HPV) are completely unexplored as yet.

Materials and methods: As a part of the HPV-Pathogen Istituto Superiore di Sanità study, a series of 150 squamous cell carcinomas (SCCs) and 152 cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN) lesions were examined by immunohistochemical staining for nm23-H1, and tested for HPV by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) with three sets of primers (MY09/11, GP5+/GP6+ and short PCR fragment). Follow-up data were available on all patients with SCC, and 67 CIN lesions were monitored by serial PCR for clearance or persistence of HPV after cone treatment.

Results: A linear decrease (p = 0.001) was observed in nm23-H1 expression, starting from CIN1 (85% with normal expression), with the most dramatic down regulation on transition from CIN2 (70% normal) to CIN3 (39%) and further to SCC (25%). Reduced expression was associated with CIN3 or cancer at an odds ratio 8.72 (95% confidence interval 4.13 to 18.41). Nm23-H1 was of no use as a marker of the high-risk human papillomavirus (HR-HPV) type, and it did not predict clearance or persistence of HR-HPV after treatment of CIN. Importantly, nm23-H1 expression was a significant prognostic factor in cervical cancer, reduced expression being associated with lower survival (p = 0.022) in univariate analysis. In the multivariate (Cox) regression model, however, only the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics stage (p = 0.001) and age (p = 0.011) remained independent prognostic predictors.

Conclusions: Down-regulated nm23-H1 expression is markedly associated with progression from CIN2 to CIN3, and predicts poor prognosis in cervical cancer. Nm23-H1 down regulation is probably orchestrated by mechanisms independent of HR-HPV oncoproteins and is possibly related to the emergence of a proteolytic phenotype.

  • CIN, cervical intraepithelial neoplasia
  • ERK, extracellular signal-regulated kinase
  • FIGO, International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics
  • HPV, oncogenic human papillomavirus
  • HR-HPV, high-risk human papillomavirus
  • IHC, immunohistochemistry
  • ISS, Istituto Superiore di Sanità
  • LR-HPV, low-risk human papillomavirus
  • MMP, matrix metalloproteinase
  • NDP, nucleoside diphosphate
  • NPV, negative predictive value
  • PCR, polymerase chain reaction
  • PPV, positive predictive value
  • SCC, squamous cell carcinoma
  • VEGF, vascular endothelial growth factor

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Footnotes

  • * HPV-Pathogen Istituto Superiore di Sanità Study Group: L Leoncini, M Alderisio—Unità Citoistopatologia, Centro Nazionale di Epidemiologia, Sorveglianza e Promozione della Salute, Istituto Superiore di Sanità (ISS), Roma, Italy; M De Nuzzo—Dipertimento di Ginecologia e Ostetrica, Azienda Ospedaliera S Orsola Malpighi, Bologna, Italy; F Zanconati—UCO Anatomia Patologica, Istopatologia e Citodiagnostica, Ospedale Maggiore, Trieste, Italy; L Mariani, M Galati—Ginecologia e Ostetrica, IFO, Istituto Regina Elena, Rome, Italy; F Sesti, A Criscuolo, E Piccione—Isituto di Ginecologia, Università di Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy; A Agarossi, EA Casolati, M Valieri—Clinica Ostetrica e Ginecologia, Istituto Scienze Biomediche, Ospedale Luigi Sacco, Milano, Italy; M Galati, A di Carlo—IFO, Istituto San Gallicano, Unità Operativa MST/HIV, Rome, Italy.

  • Published Online First 14 March 2006

  • Competing interests: None declared.

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