We previously demonstrated an association between vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), vessel counts and metastasis in human colon cancer specimens. Mutant p53 has been implicated in the regulation of angiogenesis. Immuno-histochemical detection of p53 protein has been associated with p53 gene mutations. We sought to determine a correlation between p53 protein detection (i.e., mutant p53), VEGF expression and vessel counts in human colon cancer. Surgical specimens from 93 patients with colon cancer were stained immuno-histochemically for p53, VEGF and factor VIII. Vessel counts were greater in metastatic tumors than in nonmetastatic tumors and adenomas, and greater in nonmetastatic tumors than in adenomas. Vessel counts were highest in tumors with the highest VEGF expression. Vessel counts and VEGF expression were greater in p53-positive tumors than in p53-negative tumors. p53 expression correlated with both VEGF expression and vessel count. The association of p53 expression with VEGF and vessel count suggests that the poor prognosis associated with p53 mutations may be due, in part, to the role of mutant p53 in promoting angiogenesis.