RESEARCH SUPPORT, NON-U.S. GOV'T
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Immunohistochemical study of c-erbB-2 oncoprotein overexpression in human major salivary gland carcinoma: an indicator of aggressiveness.

Laryngoscope 1992 August
In order to analyze the correlation between immunohistochemical positivity for c-erbB-2 oncoprotein and prognosis in patients with malignant salivary gland tumors, 59 cases of malignant tumors of the major salivary glands, including 35 parotid gland, 20 submaxillary gland and 4 sublingual gland tumors, were studied immunohistochemically using a polyclonal antibody against c-erbB-2 oncoprotein. Positive staining was observed in 13 (22%) of the 59 cases. Interestingly, positive results were obtained only in adenocarcinoma (6/20) and carcinoma in pleomorphic adenoma (7/15), and not in any other histological types such as adenoid cystic carcinoma, mucoepidermoid tumor, and squamous cell carcinoma. There was no correlation between the degree of differentiation of adenocarcinoma and c-erbB-2 positivity. Since the carcinoma in pleomorphic adenoma positive for c-erbB-2 oncoprotein was adenocarcinoma, adenocarcinoma and adenocarcinoma in pleomorphic adenoma were placed together (n = 33), and the presence or absence of c-erbB-2 oncoprotein in this group was examined for correlation with patients' survival and other clinicopathological features, including clinical stage, tumor size, surgical margins, and lymph node status. The c-erbB-2-positive tumors tended to be more advanced and larger than negative tumors. Similarly, c-erbB-2-positive tumors were difficult to resect completely, were associated with lymph node metastasis more frequently, and showed lower disease-free survival than negative cases (P less than .05). We conclude that immunohistochemical positivity for c-erbB-2 is an indicator of aggressiveness in both adenocarcinoma and adenocarcinoma in pleomorphic adenoma of the major salivary glands.

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