Expression of Replication-Licensing Factors MCM2 and MCM3 in Normal, Hyperplastic, and Carcinomatous Endometrium: Correlation With Expression of Ki-67 and Estrogen and Progesterone Receptors

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Summary:Minichromosome maintenance (MCM) proteins are essential for cell cycling due to their function as replication-licensing factors. The aim of the present study was to investigate the clinicopathologic implications of the MCM2 and MCM3 in endometrial carcinogenesis. The authors investigated the immunohistochemical expression of MCM2 and MCM3, Ki-67, estrogen receptor, and progesterone receptor in 23 normal endometria, 9 endometrial hyperplasias, and 60 endometrial carcinomas. In the normal endometrial glands, the expression of MCM2 and MCM3 was significantly higher in the proliferative phase than in the secretory phase and was strongly correlated with Ki-67 expression. Similar correlation between the expression of MCMs and Ki-67 was also found in endometrial hyperplasia. In endometrial carcinomas, however, the expression of MCM2 and MCM3 was significantly lower than that in the normal proliferative endometrium. There was only a weak correlation between MCM2 and Ki-67, and no significant correlation between MCM3 and Ki-67 expression. These findings suggest that the expression of MCM2 and MCM3 directly reflects cell proliferation in normal and hyperplastic endometria. In endometrial carcinomas, however, there is a discrepancy between the expression of MCMs and cell proliferation, suggesting that the replication-licensing system may be aberrant in endometrial carcinomas.

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