High nuclear expression of STAT3 is associated with unfavorable prognosis in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma

J Hematol Oncol. 2011 Aug 1;4(1):31. doi: 10.1186/1756-8722-4-31.


Background: The purpose of the study was to investigate the expression and prognostic value of STAT3 in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL).

Methods: Seventy-four DLBCL patients from 2001 to 2007 were reviewed in the study. The STAT3 expression in their tumor tissues was examined using the immunohistochemistry (IHC) method, and evaluated for its association with clinicopathological parameters.

Results: Strong nuclear staining of STAT3 and phosphorylated-STAT3tyr705 (P-STAT3) were observed in 19 cases (25.7%) and 24 cases (32.4%), respectively, and the expression levels were highly consistent between them (P = 0.001). The high nuclear expression of STAT3 was more frequent in the non-germinal center B cell-like (non-GCB) DLBCL than that in the GCB subtype, but not reaching significance (P < 0.061). The high nuclear expression of STAT3 was found to be correlated with poor overall survival (OS) (P = 0.005). Multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that the STAT3 expression was an independent prognostic factor for DLBCL patients regardless of CHOP or R-CHOP regimen used as the first-line therapy.

Conclusion: STAT3 is more frequently expressed in non-GCB DLBCL than that in GCB subtype, and its strong nuclear expression is correlated with poor OS in DLBCL.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cell Nucleus / metabolism
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Lymphoma, Large B-Cell, Diffuse / drug therapy
  • Lymphoma, Large B-Cell, Diffuse / metabolism*
  • Lymphoma, Large B-Cell, Diffuse / pathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prognosis
  • STAT3 Transcription Factor / biosynthesis*


  • STAT3 Transcription Factor
  • STAT3 protein, human