Increased microvascular proliferation is negatively correlated to tumour blood flow and is associated with unfavourable outcome in endometrial carcinomas
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Background: We aimed to study the angiogenic profile based on histomorphological markers in endometrial carcinomas in relation to imaging parameters obtained from preoperative dynamic contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (DCE-MRI) and diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) and to explore the potential value of these markers to identify patients with poor outcome.
Methods: In fifty-four surgically staged endometrial carcinoma patients, immunohistochemical staining with factor VIII and Ki67 allowed assessment of microvessel density (MVD) and microvascular proliferation reflecting tumour angiogenesis. In the same patients, preoperative pelvic DCE-MRI and DWI allowed the calculation of parameters describing tumour microvasculature and microstructure in vivo.
Results: Microvascular proliferation was negatively correlated to tumour blood flow (Fb) (r=−0.36, P=0.008), capillary permeability surface area product (PS) (r=−0.39, P=0.004) and transfer from the blood to extravascular extracellular space (EES) (Ktrans) (r=−0.40, P=0.003), and was positively correlated to tumour volume (r=0.34; P=0.004). High-tumour microvascular proliferation, low Fb and low Ktrans were all significantly associated with reduced progression/recurrence-free survival (P<0.05).
Conclusion: Disorganised angiogenesis with coexisting microvascular proliferation and low tumour blood flow is a poor prognostic factor supporting that hypoxia is associated with progression and metastatic spread in endometrial carcinomas.