Immunocytochemical detection of p53 protein from pancreatic duct brushings in patients with pancreatic carcinoma

Cancer. 1996 Jun 1;77(11):2233-9. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1097-0142(19960601)77:11<2233::AID-CNCR8>3.0.CO;2-Q.


Background: It is often difficult to distinguish pancreatic carcinoma preoperatively from chronic pancreatitis. Therefore, we have developed a new method of detecting p53 immunoreactivity in cytologic material obtained by endoscopic retrograde pancreatic duct brushing (ERPDB).

Methods: Twenty-eight patients with prominent strictures of the main pancreatic duct demonstrated by pancreatography including 20 ductal cell carcinoma and 8 chronic pancreatitis were studied. The ability to distinguish between these two groups preoperatively by conventional cytologic examination was compared with p53 immunocytochemistry using ERPDB:

Results: The sensitivity, specificity, and overall accuracy of conventional cytologic examination in distinguishing ductal cell carcinoma from chronic pancreatitis were 60%, 100%, and 71% respectively. In comparison, the sensitivity, specificity, and overall accuracy of p53 immunocytochemistry in distinguishing were 90%, 100%, and 93%, respectively. The sensitivity of p53 staining of specimens from patients with carcinoma of the body or tail of the pancreas (90%) was the same for those with tumors of the head of the pancreas (90%).

Conclusions: These results suggest that p53 immunocytochemistry using ERPDB in conjunction with conventional cytologic examination can help differentiate ductal cell carcinoma from chronic pancreatitis preoperatively.

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / chemistry*
  • Adenocarcinoma / diagnosis
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Animals
  • Cell Line
  • Cholangiopancreatography, Endoscopic Retrograde
  • Chronic Disease
  • Coloring Agents
  • Constriction, Pathologic
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Fibroblasts
  • Humans
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Proteins / analysis*
  • Pancreatic Ducts / chemistry*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / chemistry*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Pancreatitis / diagnosis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53 / analysis*


  • Coloring Agents
  • Neoplasm Proteins
  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53