PARP expression in germ cell tumours

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Poly(ADP-ribose)polymerase (PARP) inhibitors represent a new class of promising drugs in anticancer therapy.


To evaluate PARP expression in testicular germ cell tumours (GCTs) and to correlate expression patterns with clinicopathological variables.


In this translational study, tumour specimens from 124 patients with GCTs (114 patients with testicular primary tumours and 10 with extragonadal GCTs) were identified. PARP expression was detected by immunohistochemistry using monoclonal antibodies, scored by the multiplicative quickscore (QS) method and compared to PARP expression in normal testicular tissue.


We observed higher expression of PARP in testicular tumours compared to normal testicular tissue (mean QS=10.04 vs 3.31, p<0.0000001). Mean QS±SD for each histological subtype was as follows: intratubular germ cell neoplasia unclassified (IGCNU)=18.00±0.00, embryonal carcinoma=9.62±5.64, seminoma=9.74±6.51, yolk sac tumour=7.8±7.20, teratoma=5.87±5.34, and choriocarcinoma=4.50±8.33. The PARP overexpression (QS>9) was most often detected in IGCNU (100% of specimen with PARP overexpression), seminona (52.6%), embryonal carcinoma (47.0%), yolk sac tumour (33.3%), teratoma (26.7%) and choriocarcinoma (25.0%), compared to 1.9% of normal testicular tissue specimens. There was no association between PARP expression and clinical variables.


In this pilot study, we showed for the first time, that PARP is overexpressed in testicular germ cell tumours compared to normal testis.

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