Comparative study of tumor angiogenesis and immunohistochemistry for p53, c-ErbB2, c-myc and EGFr as prognostic factors in gastric cancer

Histol Histopathol. 2000 Apr;15(2):455-62. doi: 10.14670/HH-15.455.


Gastric cancer (GC) continues to be a highly aggressive malignancy with poor prognosis and low survival rates. The survival of patients with GC depends mainly on the stage of the disease, with early GC having a 5 year survival of 90-100% and advanced tumors a 5 year survival of 15-25%. The role of other prognostic factors in these tumors is still under investigation. 28 gastric dysplasia, 45 Early GC and 98 Advanced Gastric Cancers were evaluated for expression of the oncogenes p53, c-ErbB2, c-myc and the EGFr in paraffin-embedded material utilizing Avidin-Biotin immunohistochemistry techniques. In 34 cases of GC microvessel density (MVD) was determined in CD34 stained sections. Statistical correlations with stage, histologic type, differentiation degree, location, size, ploidy patterns and overall survival were done. The Mantel-Cox test was performed to evaluate which factors had an independent prognostic value. Both, tumor angiogenesis and p53 protein expression were statistically associated (95% confidence intervals) with overall survival in patients with GC. p53 protein expression was also correlated with cardial location, nodal involvement and tumor stage. c-ErbB2 may recognize a group of highly aggressive well differentiated adenocarcinomas with worse prognosis. c-myc was also significantly enhanced in well differentiated tumors. EGFr showed no significant associations. Mantel-Cox was performed to compare the prognostic value of tumor stage, p53 protein expression and tumor angiogenesis. Tumor angiogenesis was the most important prognostic indicator to predict overall survival in our series. p53 expression was not independent and did not provide additional prognostic information to tumor stage. Our study suggests that angiogenesis as demonstrated by microvessel counts in CD34 stained sections is a significantly important prognostic factor for predicting survival in gastric cancer.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • ErbB Receptors / biosynthesis*
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Liver Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Liver Neoplasms / secondary
  • Lymphatic Metastasis
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic*
  • Prognosis
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-myc / biosynthesis*
  • Receptor, ErbB-2 / biosynthesis*
  • Stomach Neoplasms / classification
  • Stomach Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Stomach Neoplasms / pathology
  • Stomach Neoplasms / physiopathology*
  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53 / biosynthesis*


  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-myc
  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53
  • ErbB Receptors
  • Receptor, ErbB-2