Title

Astrocytoma grade IV (glioblastoma multiforme) displays 3 subtypes with unique expression profiles of intermediate filament proteins

Abstract

Summary Astrocytoma grade IV (glioblastoma multiforme) is the most common and most malignant tumor of the central nervous system and is currently noncurable. Here, we have examined a population-based cohort of 47 patients with grade IV astrocytoma, who underwent tumor surgery at Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Sweden and who survived after surgery for less than 200 days (short survivors, 28 patients) and more than 500 days (long survivors, 19 patients). For each tumor, we ascertained information on patient age, sex, tumor location, oncological treatment, and survival after surgery. The analysis of the tumor volume and the extent of tumor resection (incomplete versus complete resection of the macroscopic tumor) was made retrospectively from the preoperative radiological investigations and, when available, also from postoperative radiology. We performed semiquantitative immunohistochemical evaluation of the presence of intermediate filament (nanofilament) proteins glial fibrillary acidic protein, vimentin, nestin, and synemin in tumor cells. The intermediate filament system helps cells and tissues to cope with various types of stress, and thus, it might affect the malignant potential of grade IV astrocytoma. We propose a subclassification of astrocytomas grade IV with respect to the expression of the intermediate filament proteins glial fibrillary acidic protein, vimentin, nestin, and synemin, namely, type A, B, and C. Our results suggest that the expression of the intermediate filament proteins glial fibrillary acidic protein, vimentin, nestin, and synemin is coregulated in grade IV astrocytomas. The expression patterns of the intermediate filament proteins in astrocytoma type A, B, and C might have biological and clinical significance. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.

Publication Title

Human Pathology

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