Preliminary reports involving a number of different kinds of tumors have indicated that microvessel quantification may be useful in predicting disease outcome. The aim of this study was to examine the relationship between microvessel density (MVD) as a parameter of tumor angiogenesis and the response to chemotherapy in diffuse large B-cell (DLBC) lymphomas.
A total of 36 DLBC lymphoma patients were evaluated, 23 of them with a chemosensitive; responsive disease (median survival 8 y) and 13 with a chemoresistant, refractory disease (median survival 8 months). Microvessel quantification was performed by immunohistochemical staining, using monoclonal antibodies against factor VIII related antigen (F8RA) and against platelet/endothelial cell adhesion molecule-CD31.
We found that F8RA stained a significantly higher number of blood vessels (about 2.5 times more) than CD-31; 7 samples were not stained with CD-31 but were positive for F8RA. There was no significant difference between the density of microvessel staining of the two groups. In the chemosensitive DLBC lymphomas positive for F8RA, the mean number of microvessels stained was 54.5±36.1 per microscopic field (200×) examined (range 6–149) whereas in the chemoresistant group the corresponding mean number was 43.1±25.5 (range 11–94).
F8RA appears to be more sensitive for staining DLBC lymphomas microvessels than CD-31. Our data demonstrate that there is no correlation between tumor MVD and response to chemotherapy in patients with DLBC lymphomas.
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