High-level Skp2 Expression in Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma: Correlation with the Extent of Lymph Node Metastasis, Higher Histological Grade, and Poorer Patient Outcome

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Objectives:Recent studies have shown that overexpression of S-phase kinase-associated protein 2 (Skp2) occurs in many cancers at an advanced stage. We examined the clinicopathologic significance and prognostic implication of Skp2 expression in pancreatic invasive ductal carcinoma.Methods:Tissue samples from 46 pancreatic carcinomas were examined immunohistochemically for Skp2. The proportion of constituent tumor cells with Skp2 expression was analyzed and classified as high-level nuclear expression when more than 20% of the cancer cells were positive, or low-level nuclear expression otherwise.Results:High-level Skp2 overexpression was detected in 13 (28.3%) of the 46 tumors. The incidence of high-level Skp2 was correlated with higher histological grade (P = 0.0056), the extent of lymph node metastasis (P = 0.0086), the level of lymphatic permeation (P = 0.0024), and poorer patient outcome (P = 0.0189). Multivariate analysis showed that high-level Skp2 expression was an independent predictor of overall patient survival (P = 0.0140).Conclusions:It is suggested that examination of Skp2 expression might be clinically useful for prognostication in patients with pancreatic carcinoma and that Skp2 protein might be a novel therapeutic molecular target.

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