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Can Increased Metabolic Status be a Grading Tool for Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma? A Glucose Transporter 1 Immunoexpression Study.

Background: Glucose transporter-1 (GLUT-1) is a GLUT protein whose expression is upregulated in malignant cells where enhanced uptake of glucose is observed.

Aim: The aim of this study is to evaluate the expression of GLUT-1 protein in oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) tissue sections using immunohistochemistry and to describe the relationship between increased metabolic status and the grades of OSCC.

Materials and Methods: This is cross-sectional study with 76 formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue blocks of OSCC, obtained from the archives of the department. All the cases were scored using Bryne's grading system by three oral pathologists independently. The tissue sections were then stained using immunohistochemistry with anti-GLUT-1 rabbit monoclonal antibody.

Results: Staining intensity and localization of positively stained slides were evaluated. Overall, a significant correlation between Bryne's histopathological grading system for OSCC and GLUT-1 immunohistochemical expression was observed. Thus, high GLUT-1 expressions are observed with increasing grades of OSCC.

Conclusion: This study shows that a significant positive correlation exists between GLUT-1 immunoexpression and histological grading of OSCC. Thus, GLUT-1 expression can be used as a diagnostic adjunct and prognostic marker for OSCC patients.

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