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Expression of p53 in early (T1) gastric carcinoma and precancerous adjacent mucosa.
  1. M J Brito,
  2. G T Williams,
  3. H Thompson,
  4. M I Filipe
  1. Department of Histopathology, UMDS Guy's Hospital, London.


    Abnormalities of the tumour suppressor gene p53 have been shown in approximately 60% of advanced gastric adenocarcinomas and it has been suggested that the immunohistochemical finding of increased p53 expression is a prognostic marker in gastric cancer. No studies of early (T1) tumours have been reported. Over expression of p53 protein in 95 early gastric carcinomas and in adjacent mucosa was investigated using immunohistochemistry with antibody CM1. Thirty five per cent of the tumours were positive. The frequency of p53 positivity in tumours of tubular histological type (46%) was significantly higher than that in signet ring tumours (10%) (p = 0.006), and neoplasms that invaded deeply into the submucosa were more frequently positive (45%) than others (30%). Five of eight (62%) T1 tumours with lymph node metastases showed immunoreactive p53. In signet ring tumours, immunopositivity correlated with the frequency of DNA aneuploidy. p53 Over expression was also found in 15% of 26 examples of high grade dysplasia in mucosa adjacent to invasive tumours. No positivity was found in intestinal metaplasia or in normal mucosa. The findings show that immunocytochemically demonstrable over expression of p53 correlates with other morphological markers of aggressiveness in T1 gastric adenocarcinoma. The increasing frequency of p53 immunoreactivity in the sequence of high grade dysplasia-->early gastric cancer-->advanced gastric cancer supports the view that abnormalities of p53 are related to tumour progression in gastric carcinogenesis.

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