Background: Recently, it has been shown that heating paraffin embedded tumor sections in a microwave oven can reactivate an epitope of Ki-67 protein that is recognized by the monoclonal antibody MIB-1. With this technique, a close correlation was shown between the bromodeoxyuridine labeling index (BUdR LI) and the MIB-1 proliferating cell index (PCI) in corresponding regions of glioblastomas.
Methods: The reliability of the MIB-1 PCI as a marker of proliferation was evaluated in 90 cerebral gliomas. The MIB-1 immunostaining of ethanol-fixed, paraffin embedded sections of 23 moderately anaplastic astrocytomas, 22 highly anaplastic astrocytomas, 30 glioblastomas, and 15 mixed malignant gliomas was compared with the BUdR LI and, in some cases, the Ki-67 PCI.
Results: MIB-1 positive cells were detected easily in the majority of the cases, and the MIB-1 immunostaining was often superior to that of Ki-67 in individual tumors. The MIB-1 PCI was significantly higher than the Ki-67 PCI and the BUdR LI. Linear-regression analysis showed significant correlations among the three indices. The MIB-1 PCI was correlated with the BUdR LI in each group of the astrocytic tumors and mixed malignant gliomas; the MIB-1 PCI was approximately 2.4-2.8 times higher than the BUdR LI.
Conclusions: The close correlation between the MIB-1 PCI and the in vivo BUdR LI in serial sections of glioma subtypes suggests that MIB-1 immunostaining is a useful technique for analyzing the proliferative potential of individual gliomas.