Cytoplasmic expression of maspin predicts unfavourable prognosis in patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the lung

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Maspin is known to be a tumour suppressor protein, and its prognostic significance in patients with several types of cancer, including lung squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), has been reported. However, its prognostic impact on lung SCC has been controversial. We explored the prognostic value of maspin expression with particular reference to its subcellular localization in patients with lung SCC.

Methods and results:

Paraffin-embedded tissue samples from 101 curatively resected patients with lung SCC were analysed immunohistochemically using an antibody for maspin. Maspin positivity was defined as strong expression in only the cytoplasm and observed in 25 patients (24.6%). It correlated significantly with the presence of lymph node metastasis (P = 0.006) and higher pathological stage (P = 0.003). The patients were followed-up for 2–119 months (median: 50 months), and the maspin-positive group had shorter disease-free survival (DFS) and disease-specific survival (DSS) by log-rank test (P = 0.002, P = 0.016, respectively). Multivariate analysis revealed that the status of maspin was the only independent prognostic factor for DFS and DSS (P = 0.017, P = 0.047, respectively).


Cytoplasmic expression of maspin could be an independent unfavourable prognostic indicator in patients with lung SCC.

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