Axl and prostasin are biomarkers for prognosis of ovarian adenocarcinoma

Ann Diagn Pathol. 2013 Oct;17(5):425-9. doi: 10.1016/j.anndiagpath.2013.01.005. Epub 2013 May 23.


In this study, the protein levels of Axl and prostasin in malignant neoplasms of the ovary and their clinicopathologic significance were investigated. The protein levels of Axl and prostasin in ovarian adenocarcinomas (n = 80), serous cystadenoma (n = 15), mucinous cystadenomas (n = 15), and normal ovary tissues (n = 10) were measured using immunohistochemistry. The percentage of Axl-positive cases was significantly higher in ovarian adenocarcinoma (61.3%) than in mucinous adenoma tissues (13.3%; P < .001) and normal tissues (0.0%; P = .000). The percentage of prostasin-positive cases was significantly lower in ovarian adenocarcinoma (42.5%) than in mucinous adenoma tissues (86.7%; P = .000) and normal tissues (100%; P = .000). The expression of Axl was significantly lower in cases with G1 tumor and TNM stage I or II tumor with no lymph node metastasis than in cases with G3 tumor and TNM stage III or IV tumor with lymph node metastasis (P < .05 or P < .01). However, the expression pattern of prostasin was opposite to that of Axl (P < .01 or P < .01). Univariate Kaplan-Meier analysis showed a negative correlation between Axl expression (P = .000) and overall survival and a positive correlation between prostasin expression (P = .000) and overall survival. Multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that Axl-positive expression and prostasin-negative expression are independent bad prognostic predictors in ovarian adenocarcinoma. Our study suggested that Axl and prostasin expression may be closely related to carcinogenesis, metastasis, and prognosis of ovarian adenocarcinoma.

Keywords: Dehydrogenase1; Immunohistochemistry; Musashi-1; Ovarian cancer.

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / metabolism*
  • Adenocarcinoma / mortality
  • Adenocarcinoma / pathology
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / mortality
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / pathology
  • Prognosis
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / analysis
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Receptor Protein-Tyrosine Kinases / analysis
  • Receptor Protein-Tyrosine Kinases / biosynthesis*
  • Serine Endopeptidases / analysis
  • Serine Endopeptidases / biosynthesis*


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins
  • Receptor Protein-Tyrosine Kinases
  • axl receptor tyrosine kinase
  • Serine Endopeptidases
  • prostasin