BACKGROUND Tumor-associated macrophages play a significant role in tumor progression. CSF-1/CSF-1R is one of the most primary regulators of macrophage physiology in immune system. The expression of CSF-1/CSF-1R in nasopharyngeal carcinoma is unclear. OBJECTIVES The aim of this study was to compare the expression of CSF-1R in nasopharyngeal carcinoma to nasopharyngitis for assessing the role CSF-1/CSF-1R in nasopharyngeal carcinoma. MATERIALS AND METHODS Diagnostic tissues from 56 nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients and 32 nasopharyngitis patients were evaluated retrospectively by immunohistochemical analysis for the expression of CSF-1R. RESULTS Significant differences of CSF-1R expression exists between nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients and nasopharyngitis patients (p<0.001). However, there is no relevance between CSF-1R and worse survival.