Immunohistochemical expression of melan-A and tyrosinase in uveal melanoma

J Carcinog. 2007 Apr 20;6:6. doi: 10.1186/1477-3163-6-6.


Background: Melan-A and tyrosinase are new immunohistochemical markers that can be used in the diagnosis of melanocytic lesions. The aim of this study was to investigate the correlation between radiotherapy or clinicohistopathological parameters and the expression of melan-A and tyrosinase in uveal melanoma.

Methods: Thirty-six enucleated cases of uveal melanoma were studied. The formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded specimens were immunostained with monoclonal antibodies against melan-A and tyrosinase. The samples were classified as either positive or negative. The chi-square or the Student-t tests were used to test for the correlation of the expression rates of melan-A and tyrosinase with clinico-pathological parameters.

Results: Melan-A and tyrosinase were positive in 33 (91.7%) and 35 (97.2%) of the specimens, respectively. There was no significant association between the expression of melan-A or tyrosinase and radiotherapy or any clinico-pathological parameter. All specimens were positive for at least one of the immunohistochemical markers.

Conclusion: To the best of our knowledge this is the first study concluding that the expression of melanocytic markers such as melan-A and tyrosinase is not influenced by radiotherapy or any clinico-pathological parameter. Moreover, when tyrosinase and melan-A are used together, 100% of the formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded uveal melanoma samples tested positive for one of those markers.