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Profile of apoptotic proteins in oral squamous cell carcinoma: A cluster analysis of 171 cases | Applied Cancer Research | Full Text

Profile of apoptotic proteins in oral squamous cell carcinoma: A cluster analysis of 171 cases | Applied Cancer Research | Full Text

Biomed Central



Applied Cancer Research

Profile of apoptotic proteins in oral squamous cell carcinoma: A cluster analysis of 171 cases

  • Cláudia Malheiros Coutinho-CamilloEmail author,
  • Silvia Vanessa Lourenço,
  • Renato David Puga,
  • Aline Santos Damascena,
  • Tathyane Harumi Nakajima Teshima,
  • Luiz Paulo Kowalski and
  • Fernando Augusto Soares
Applied Cancer Research201737:2
DOI: 10.1186/s41241-016-0008-2
Received: 17 May 2016
Accepted: 16 December 2016
Published: 24 January 2017

Abstract

Background

Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) is the eighth most prevalent cancer worldwide. In recent large-scale studies, by immunohistochemistry and cluster analysis, several markers were associated with patient survival in various tumors. The aim of this study was to analyze the expression profiles of 23 proteins that have been linked to the inhibition (Bcl-2, Bcl-x, Bcl-xL, Bcl-2-related protein A1, BAG-1, and survivin) and promotion (Bak, Bax, Bim/Bod, Bim-Long, Bad, Bid, PUMA, Apaf-1, caspase-2, caspase-3, caspase-6, caspase-7, caspase-8, caspase-9, caspase-10, Smac/DIABLO, and cytochrome c) of apoptosis in OSCC.

Methods

Two-hundred and twenty nine cases of OSCC, arranged in a tissue microarray, were immunohistochemically analyzed, and the results were quantified on an automated imaging system. The data were analyzed using a random forest clustering method.

Results

Overall protein expression patterns defined two chief clusters: an anti-apoptotic cluster (142 cases) and a pro-apoptotic cluster (29 cases). These groups could not be explained by any clinical or pathological characteristic, and overall and disease-free survival did not differ between them.

Conclusions

Although there was no association with survival, the cluster analysis demonstrated specific protein profiles that could be of interest for using targeted therapies: in one of the clusters, the expression of pro-apoptotic proteins was more prominent, demonstrating a pro-apoptotic profile and highlighting the importance of apoptosis during OSCC development.

Keywords

Oral squamous cell carcinoma Apoptosis Cluster analysis Protein profile Immunohistochemistry

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