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2012, Volume 28, Number 2, Page(s) 119-127     
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DOI: 10.5146/tjpath.2012.01110
The Expression of p53 and Cox-2 in Basal Cell Carcinoma, Squamous Cell Carcinoma and Actinic Keratosis Cases
1Department of Pathology, M.H. Yozgat State Hospital, YOZGAT, TURKEY
2M.H. Ankara Numune Education and Research Hospital, ANKARA, TURKEY
Keywords: Basal cell carcinoma, Squamous cell carcinoma, Actinic keratosis, p53, Cyclooxygenase 2

Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate p53 and COX-2 expressions in basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and actinic keratoses, and to determine a possible relationship.

Material and Method: 50 basal cell carcinoma, 45 squamous cell carcinoma and 45 actinic keratosis cases were evaluated. The type of tumor in basal cell carcinoma and tumor differentiation in squamous cell carcinoma were noted and the paraffin block that best represented the tumor was chosen. Immunostaining by p53 and COX-2 was performed on sections of the paraffin blocks.

Results: p53 expression was observed in 98% of basal cell carcinoma, 88.9% of squamous cell carcinoma and all actinic keratosis cases. p53 expression was also noted in non-dysplastic appearing epithelium in actinic keratosis cases. COX-2 expression was seen in 90, 100 and 88.9% of the basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and actinic keratosis groups, respectively. Skin appendages, inflammatory cells and vascular structures were also stained by COX-2 besides tumor tissue. COX-2 expression increased by the p53 expression increase in basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma. p53 and COX-2 expressions were not related in terms of tumor type in the BCC and were not related in terms of differentiation in SCC.

Conclusion: The existence of p53 expression in actinic keratosis cases has supported the idea that p53 plays a role in the early steps of carcinogenesis in skin cancers. The fact that the expression of COX-2 increases in line with the increase of p53 expression in basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma cases indicates that COX-2 expression may be affected by p53.

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