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Image cytometric analysis of p53 and mdm-2 expression in primary and recurrent mucoepidermoid carcinoma of parotid gland: immunohistochemical study

Ehab S Abd-Elhamid1* and Mohamed H Elmalahy2

Author affiliations

1 Associate Professor, Oral Pathology Department, Faculty of Dentistry, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt

2 Associate Professor, Oral Pathology Department, Faculty of Oral and Dental Medicine, Elmenia University, Cairo, Egypt

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Citation and License

Diagnostic Pathology 2010, 5:72  doi:10.1186/1746-1596-5-72

Published: 22 November 2010


Aims and Objectives

This study aims to analyze immunocytochemically p53 aberrant expression and mdm-2 expression in primary and recurrent mucoepidermoid carcinoma (MEC) of parotid gland and to ascertain if expression of these markers correlates with tumor behavior, clinical outcome, histological grade and local recurrence.


20 cases histologically diagnosed as primary MEC with different grades were included in the study. Out of 20 cases, 7 were classified as grade I, 8 as grade II and 5 as grade III. Immunohistochemical staining of these 20 primary cases as well as 6 recurrent cases with anti-p53 and anti-mdm-2 antibodies was carried out. Area fraction of immunopositivity was estimated by image analysis software.


16/20 primary cases were p53 +ve (80%). The p53 positive cases included 3 cases classified as grade (I), 8 cases as grade (II) and 5 cases as grade (III). All 6 recurrent cases were p53 +ve. On the other hand, 14/20 primary and only 2/6 recurrent cases were mdm-2 +ve. The mdm-2 +ve primary cases included 2 classified as grade (I), 7 as grade (II) and 5 as grade (III). 12 primary MEC showed co-expression of both p53 and mdm-2 of which 2 cases showed local recurrence.


these data suggested that expression of p53 and mdm-2 in primary and recurrent MEC correlates with the high histological grade. P53 aberrant expression is not only considered as an early event in MEC carcinogenesis but also correlates to tumor behavior and local recurrence. Mdm-2 overexpression is correlated to pathogenesis of MEC. However, no strong evidence was found between mdm-2 expression and MEC local recurrence.