Increased expression of EphA2 correlates with adverse outcome in primary and recurrent glioblastoma multiforme patients

Oncol Rep. 2008 Jan;19(1):151-6.


Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most aggressive form of brain tumor characterized by excessive angiogenesis. The dismal prognosis of patients with GBM warrants the development of new targeting therapies based on novel molecular markers. The EphA2 receptor tyrosine kinase plays a pivotal role in tumor angiogenesis and an increased expression in glioma patients has recently been reported. In this study, we investigated the expression of EphA2 in human normal brain, primary and recurrent GBM and correlated it with clinical pathological parameters and patient's outcome. In addition, intratumor microvascular density was quantified by immunostaining for the endothelial cell marker, von Willebrand factor. A different intensity of the membranous and cytoplastic expression of EphA2 was observed in the 40 primary and recurrent samples of GBM analyzed but not in the normal brain. A high level expression of EphA2 was demonstrated in 24 (60%) of the primary and recurrent GBM analyzed. The increased expression of the EphA2 protein was significantly associated with the adverse outcome of GBM patients (p<0.01 for overall survival). The data presented in this study define the expression pattern of EphA2 in both primary and recurrent glioblastoma and suggest an important role of EphA2 in the pathogenesis of GBM. The EphA2 may be used as a surrogate marker to screen patients for tyrosine kinase inhibitor therapy.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis*
  • Brain Neoplasms / blood supply
  • Brain Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Brain Neoplasms / mortality
  • Female
  • Glioblastoma / blood supply
  • Glioblastoma / metabolism*
  • Glioblastoma / mortality
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic
  • Prognosis
  • Receptor, EphA2 / biosynthesis*


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Receptor, EphA2