Evaluation of p53 protein expression as a marker for long-term prognosis in colorectal carcinoma

J. W R Mulder, I. O. Baas, M. M. Polak, S. N. Goodman, G. J A Offerhaus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

76 Scopus citations


Mutation of the p53 gene is reported to be of prognostic importance in colorectal carcinomas. Immunohistochemical staining of the accumulated p53 gene product may be a simple alternative for p53 mutation analysis. Previous studies addressing the prognostic importance of p53 expression, however, yielded contradictory results. Therefore, we evaluated the importance of p53 expression as a marker for long-term prognosis in a well-characterised study population of 109 colorectal carcinomas. After antigen retrieval with target unmasking fluid (TUF), immunostaining of p53 was performed with both monoclonal antibody DO7 and polyclonal antibody CMI. Objective quantification of the p53 signal was assessed by a computerised image analyser. p53 expression was higher in non-mucinous tumours than in mucinous tumours (p53 labelling index = 30% and 17% respectively, P = 0.05), and in metastatic tumours compared with non-metastatic tumours (p53 labelling index = 37% and 22% respectively, P = 0.05). Other histopathological features were not related to p53 expression. In multivariate analysis, Dukes' stage (P = 0.02) and histological grade (P = 0.05) stood out as independent markers for prognosis. p53 expression was not an independent marker for prognosis. At present, p53 expression is not a useful marker for long-term prognosis. Further insight into the relationship between p53 mutations and p53 expression is needed to elucidate more precisely the clinical relevance of p53 alterations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1257-1262
Number of pages6
JournalBritish Journal of Cancer
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1995


  • Carcinoma
  • Colorectal
  • Long-term
  • p53
  • Prognosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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