Cyclooxygenase-2 in Oral Cancer: A Review Dr. Rupal
- Rajendra Punse
BACKGROUND Despite recent advances in the diagnosis and treatment of oral carcinoma, outcomes remain disappointing. The identification of new prognostic factors is necessary to improve survival. To determine the prognostic significance of cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 and DNA topoisomerase (DNA-Topo) IIalpha expression in patients with oral carcinoma, we immunohistochemically examined these enzymes and studied their relation to overall 5-year survival. METHODS Surgical specimens were obtained from 160 patients with oral carcinoma, 80 with and 80 without regional lymph node metastasis. The specimens were immunostained for COX-2 and DNA-Topo IIalpha as an index of cell proliferative activity. COX-2 immunoreactivity and clinicopathological data were analyzed, and 5-year survival was calculated by the Kaplan-Meier method. RESULTS COX-2 expression in primary lesions was higher in cases with lymph node metastasis than in those without lymph node metastasis. An increase in tumor size was associated with increased COX-2 expression. In most cases with lymph node metastasis, COX-2 expression was higher in metastatic lesions than in primary lesions. As COX-2 expression increased, the DNA-Topo IIalpha labeling index significantly increased and the overall 5-year survival rate decreased. CONCLUSION Expression of COX-2 and DNA-Topo IIalpha were related to lymph node metastasis, cell proliferative activity, and overall 5-year survival rate in oral carcinoma. These enzymes may therefore be valuable diagnostic and prognostic indices in oral carcinoma.