Clinical research
The AgNORs count in predicting long-term survival in serous ovarian cancer
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Submission date: 2011-01-22
Final revision date: 2011-05-13
Acceptance date: 2011-06-09
Online publication date: 2013-08-12
Publication date: 2014-02-20
Arch Med Sci 2014;10(1):84–90
Introduction: The value of argyrophilic nucleolar organizer regions (AgNORs) to predict survival in patients with ovarian cancer has not been clearly explained yet. The aim of study was to assess the value of analysis of the mean number of AgNORs per nucleus (mAgNOR) and mean percentage of nuclei with five or more AgNORs per nucleus (pAgNOR) in the prediction of disease-free survival (DFS) and overall survival (OS) in patients with serous ovarian cancer.
Material and methods: The study examined 52 patients treated for serous ovarian cancer with a follow-up period of 2-143 months. After silver staining paraffin specimens from primary surgery, mAgNOR and pAgNOR in cancer cells were counted and analyzed. Age, grading, radicality of surgery and FIGO staging were analyzed as covariates.
Results: Mean mAgNOR equaled 4.4 ±0.9 and pAgNOR equaled 42.2 ±20.8%. Both mAgNOR and pAgNOR were the lowest in G1 tumors. The mAgNOR and pAgNOR were lower in stage I than stage IV cancers. The DFS and OS rates were respectively 15.4% and 21.2%. In univariate analysis FIGO staging, grading, and pAgNOR were associated with worse prognosis, while radicality of surgery remained a significant protective factor in terms of DFS. Higher FIGO staging and older age worsened OS. In multivariate analysis FIGO staging remained significantly associated with both DFS (HR 1.98; 95% CI 1.05-3.71) and OS (HR 1.76; 95% CI 1.00-3.10), while age affected OS rates (HR 1.78; 95% CI 1.04-2.95).
Conclusions: mAgNOR and pAgNOR are useful markers of cellular kinetics. Prospective studies in larger populations are needed to confirm these results in terms of AgNORs’ effects on survival.