Combined loss of expression of involucrin and cytokeratin 13 is associated with poor prognosis in squamous cell carcinoma of mobile tongue
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionHead and Neck, 2021. 10.1002/hed.26826
Background This study aimed to evaluate the prognostic significance of expression levels of involucrin (IVL), cytokeratin (CK)-10 and -13 at different intratumor sites (tumor center and invading area) of oral tongue squamous cell carcinoma (OTSCC). Methods IVL, CK13 and CK10 expression levels were examined in a multicenter cohort of 146 OTSCCs using immunohistochemistry. External mRNA datasets were used for expression analysis and/or to validate survival associations. Results External transcriptomic datasets showed downregulation of IVL and KRT13 in oral malignancies including OTSCC as compared to normal controls. The combined loss of IVL and CK13 expression at the invading core but not at the center core was significantly associated with poor differentiation and reduced 5-year overall survival. Multivariate Cox analysis confirmed the loss of CK13 and IVL expression to be an independent prognostic factor. Transcriptomic dataset corroborated immunohistochemistry results. Conclusions Combined expression levlels of IVL and CK13 might be useful as prognostic biomarkers in OTSCC.