Bcl-2 Expression in Malignant Melanoma and Its Prognostic Significance

Eur J Surg Oncol. 1996 Aug;22(4):347-9. doi: 10.1016/s0748-7983(96)90176-6.


Programmed cell death (apoptosis) is now recognized as an important factor in tumour growth. Bcl-2 is an oncogene which promotes tumour progression by specifically inhibiting programmed cell death. Bcl-2 oncoprotein was measured using flow cytometry in 42 surgically excised regional lymph node metastases from patients with a median follow-up of 45 months. Fifteen patients in the study were found to have bcl-2 expression which was associated with significantly shorter survival (log-rank test, P<0.002). In addition, multivariate analysis confirmed the predictive value of bcl-2 independent of other established prognostic markers (chi(2)=7.02, P<0.01). Oncogenic control of programmed cell death is therefore important in melanoma progression and bcl-2 measurement provides a useful marker of prognosis for regional lymph node metastases.

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Disease Progression
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Melanoma / genetics
  • Melanoma / metabolism*
  • Middle Aged
  • Prognosis
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / genetics
  • Proto-Oncogenes / physiology*
  • Survival Analysis


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins