An evaluation of EGFR, E Cadherin, Cyclin D1, p53 and p63 marker expression using a tissue microarray of head and neck squamous cell carcinoma cases
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) is the 6th most common cause of cancer and in the UK in 2006, 5,325 people were diagnosed with oral cancer. The average 5-year survival rate for cancer of the oral cavity is still only around 50%. This research project used tissue microarrays (TMAs) to semi-quantitatively analyse the immunohistochemical expression of five biomarkers; EGFR, Cyclin-D1, E-Cadherin, p53 and p63 in 100 HNSCC (72 were males and 28 females) of mixed TNM stage, histological grade and patient smoking status. Each tumour was represented in the TMA by 3 cores and aggregate scores were correlated with patient gender, grade of tumour, smoking status and five year survival using the statistics package R. This comprised of visualising data using boxplots, survival analysis by Kaplan-Meier plot analysis, a log rank test for the differences in the data, Cox proportional hazards model for correlating histological grade, gender and smoking status with survival, Mann-Whitney test for showing differences between groups of patients and Spearman's rank for correlating individual biomarker expression. Multivariate statistical analysis explored potential biological groups across patients using Hierarchical cluster analysis and the comparison of the resultant clusters was carried out using Fisher's exact test p53 showed a significant difference in expression of marker linked to survival using a log rank test. p63 was confirmed as a significant predictor of survival in a Cox proportional hazards model. p53 showed significance using univariate analysis related to gender and EGFR to smoking status. E-Cadherin and EGFR showed significance relating to poor/well tumour grades. There were trends seen in expression of other markers linked to survival and grade of tumour. Correlation was seen between 4 pairs of markers. Hierarchial clustering analysis was carried out on 3 markers resulted in the identification of three cluster groups, 3 different subsets of tumour expressing different levels of markers.
MSc Biomedical Science (Cellular Pathology)
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