Associations between intratumoral and peritumoral M2 macrophage counts and cervical squamous cell carcinoma invasion patterns.

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To study the correlation between M2 tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs) and invasion patterns in cervical squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) tissues.


In the present observational study, two commercial SCC tissue microarrays were evaluated by immunohistochemical analysis between January 1, 2016, and December 31, 2016. CD163-positive cells in a cervical SCC tissue microarray were identified. Tissue samples were stratified into groups based on a pushing border pattern (PBP), a diffuse infiltration pattern (DIP), or non-tumorous tissues included as a control group; M2 TAM numbers and distributions were compared.


The microarrays included 109 cervical SCC samples and 45 non-tumorous control samples. The mean number of intratumoral M2 TAMs in cervical SCC tissue samples (35.8 ± 28.3) was significantly higher than the number of intraepithelial M2 TAMs in non-tumorous cervical samples (1.2 ± 3.6) (P<0.001); similarly, the number of peritumoral M2 TAMs in cervical SCC (44.7 ± 29.4) was higher than in non-tumorous cervical tissues (10.4 ± 9.2) (P<0.001). The numbers of intratumoral (P=0.046) and peritumoral (P=0.002) M2 TAMs were higher among the DIP group compared with the PBP group.


A close relationship was identified between M2 TAMs and invasion patterns in cervical SCC. Further, M2 TAM infiltration was more pronounced in DIP compared with PBP SCC tissue samples.

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