Prognostic significance of cyclooxygenase-2 expression and nuclear p53 accumulation in patients with colorectal cancer

J Surg Oncol. 2008 Jan 1;97(1):51-6. doi: 10.1002/jso.20907.


Background: Cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 is believed to be an important enzyme related to the pathogenesis of colorectal cancer (CRC). p53 has been reported to be a negative regulator of COX-2 expression in in vitro studies. The aim of this study was to investigate COX-2 expression and its relationship with nuclear p53 accumulation and their prognostic significance in CRC.

Methods: COX-2 expression and nuclear p53 accumulation were examined by immunohistochemistry in 231 sporadic CRCs. Their prognostic significance and interrelationship were statistically evaluated.

Results: We found 42.4% of the 231 cases of CRCs with positive COX-2 expression. Nuclear p53 accumulation was observed in 46.8% of cases. There was no significant correlation between COX-2 expression and nuclear p53 accumulation. COX-2 expression had no correlation with patient survival, whereas nuclear p53 accumulation was significantly correlated with poor patient survival on univariate and multivariate analysis.

Conclusions: These results suggest that COX-2 expression does not play a role in the prognosis of CRC and COX-2 expression is not affected by the status of nuclear p53 accumulation in CRC. In addition, our findings support that nuclear p53 accumulation may be a useful prognostic marker for patients with CRC.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Active Transport, Cell Nucleus
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cell Nucleus / metabolism*
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / mortality
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / pathology
  • Cyclooxygenase 2 / analysis*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prognosis
  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53 / metabolism*


  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53
  • Cyclooxygenase 2
  • PTGS2 protein, human