RESEARCH SUPPORT, NON-U.S. GOV'T
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Immunohistochemical study of c-erbB-2 expression in carcinoma ex-pleomorphic adenoma.

Histopathology 1996 March
A series of 19 cases of carcinoma ex-pleomorphic adenoma was studied for the immuno-expression of c-erbB-2 oncoprotein. Twelve tumours showed a malignant component with only one histological type; in the remaining seven there was co-existence of areas of various carcinoma types, adenocarcinoma NOS being the most frequent. Membranous c-erbB-2 reactivity was found in 21.1% of the cases, all corresponding to high-grade adenocarcinomatous areas. The low-grade carcinoma types that formed the malignant mixed tumours components were negative. Benign pleomorphic adenoma areas, either adjacent or intermingled with carcinomatous areas, were also consistently negative, proving that c-erbB-2 accumulation is associated with the acquisition of the malignant phenotype. The finding of a preferential association between c-erbB-2 overexpression and high-grade malignant mixed tumour may indicate prognostic implications for the oncogene protein and may also be indicative of its specific relationship with the putative pathway of malignant transformation in pleomorphic adenomas.

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