Between January 1989 and August 1991, 62 patients undergoing resection for colorectal adenocarcinoma were assessed in a prospective fashion on the basis of various tumor characteristics that are thought to indicate prognosis. Parameters measured included epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFr) expression, a cell membrane receptor known to be overexpressed in a variety of tumors, Ki-67, a monoclonal antibody marker of cell proliferation, as well as flow cytometry and standard histologic examination. Statistical analysis included chi square with Yates correction when appropriate, Wilcoxon W, and multivariate logistic regression. EGFr positive tumors were associated with worse Dukes' stage (27% of EGFr negative tumors were Dukes' C or D vs. 58% of EGFr positive tumors, P = 0.03), as well as more aneuploid characteristics by flow cytometry (48% EGFr negative = aneuploid vs. 82% EGFr positive = aneuploid, P = 0.01). Lymphatic invasion was more frequent in EGFr positive tumors (P = 0.03). These factors proved to be independent of each other by multivariate analysis. Ki-67 did not correlate with any of the measured parameters and was of extremely limited use in the evaluation of the study population. Multivariate analysis indicated that aneuploid tumors were associated with worse Dukes' stage than diploid tumors. Histologic parameters such as lymphatic and vascular invasion as well as histologic grade are compared to the other parameters involved with prognosis.