Comparison of histological changes and changes in nm23 and c-MET expression between primary and metastatic sites in osteosarcoma: a clinicopathologic and immunohistochemical study

Hum Pathol. 2000 Jun;31(6):709-16. doi: 10.1053/hupa.2000.8230.


Changes in morphological features between the primary and metastatic sites in osteosarcoma and the role of nm23 protein and c-MET oncogene product have remained controversial. In addition to histological studies, we evaluated the expression of nm23, c-MET, p53, and MDM2 immunohistochemically using 25 osteosarcomas in which both primary and concordant metastatic specimens were available. Moreover, we assessed proliferative activity using the monoclonal antibody MIB-1. Among these 25 cases, 4 tumors that were osteoblastic type (16%) in the primary site had changed morphologically to MFH-like type in the metastatic site, whereas 2 MFH-like type and 1 small cell-type tumors had changed to osteoblastic type. MIB-1 LI was significantly higher in the metastatic site than in the primary site (primary, 20.02; metastatic, 26.72; P = .0209). Seventeen cases (68%) showed increased nm23 expression in the metastatic site, whereas 2 cases showed reduced expression. nm23 expression was significantly increased in the metastatic site, compared with the primary site (P = .0009). Seven cases (28%) showing negative reaction for c-MET in the primary site showed immunuoreactivity for c-MET in the metastatic site. Although there was no statistical significance, c-MET expression seemed to be more frequent in the metastatic site, compared with the primary site. Among the overall tumors, c-MET-positive tumors showed significantly higher MIB-1 LI, compared with c-MET-negative tumors (negative, 20.99; positive, 27.65; P = .0292). No significant change was observed regarding p53 and MDM2 between the primary and metastatic site. Our results suggest that rather than being a metastasis-suppressor gene, nm23 is in fact correlated with metastatic progression in osteosarcoma. Positive correlation between c-MET expression and proliferative activity also suggests that c-MET expression may play an important role in tumor progression in osteosarcomas.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antigens, Neoplasm / analysis
  • Bone Neoplasms / chemistry
  • Bone Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Cell Division
  • Child
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Lung Neoplasms / chemistry
  • Lung Neoplasms / pathology
  • Lung Neoplasms / secondary*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Monomeric GTP-Binding Proteins / analysis*
  • NM23 Nucleoside Diphosphate Kinases
  • Nucleoside-Diphosphate Kinase*
  • Osteoblasts / pathology
  • Osteosarcoma / chemistry
  • Osteosarcoma / pathology*
  • Osteosarcoma / secondary*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-met / analysis*
  • Transcription Factors / analysis*


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antigens, Neoplasm
  • NM23 Nucleoside Diphosphate Kinases
  • Transcription Factors
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-met
  • NME1 protein, human
  • Nucleoside-Diphosphate Kinase
  • Monomeric GTP-Binding Proteins