Before high-grade papillary serous carcinoma (HG-PSC) becomes invasive, it is believed to be a poorly defined short-lived precursor lesion. A recent characterization of serous tubal intraepithelial carcinoma (STIC) and of the p53 signature suggested that HG-PSC may follow a stepwise progression on cellular and molecular levels. High-mobility group AT-hook 2 (HMGA2), an oncofetal protein, is overexpressed in ovarian cancer. To test whether HMGA2 can be another valuable marker for STIC, we examined HMGA2 expression in 3 groups of patients: (1) 24 patients with STIC and its invasive counterpart, HG-PSC of the fallopian tubes, (2) 24 patients with HG-PSC of the ovaries but without STIC (positive control), and (3) 30 patients with cancer and normal fallopian tubes (negative control). We found that HMGA2 was overexpressed in 75% of patients with STIC, was coexpressed with p53 in more than 50% of patients, and was completely negative in the secretory cells of the 30 patients with normal fallopian tubes. Among 7 patients with cells negative for p53 staining, HMGA2 was positive in 5; among 6 patients whose tumor cells were negative for HMGA2 in STIC, 3 were positive for HMGA2 in the invasive component; about 70% of invasive HG-PSC tumor cells were immunoreactive for both HMGA2 and TP53. In invasive carcinoma, HMGA2 overexpression was correlated with p53 (r=0.45), indicating the role of HMGA2 in p53 mediated tumor progression. Our findings of immunoreactivity for HMGA2 may lead to a novel, useful biomarker to complement p53 in the detection of early-stage serous carcinoma.
- Fallopian tube
- Papillary serous carcinoma
- Serous tubal intraepithelial carcinoma
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine