Indian Journal of Pathology and Microbiology
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Year : 2011  |  Volume : 54  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 526-531

Increased expression of COX-2 in recurrent basal cell carcinoma of the skin: A pilot study

Department of Pathology, Süleyman Demirel University Faculty of Medicine, Isparta, Turkey

Correspondence Address:
Kemal Kursat Bozkurt
Süleyman Demirel Universitesi, Tip Fakültesi, Arastirma ve Uygulama Hastanesi, Patoloji Anabilim Dali, Isparta
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0377-4929.85086

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Introduction: Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most frequent malignant skin tumor. BCC rarely metastasizes, but it is often locally aggressive. Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) is critical for tumor formation, angiogenesis and metastasis. Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are the members of the family of zinc (Zn)- and calcium-dependent endopeptidases that degrade the extracellular matrix. Materials and Methods: In our study, we used immunohistochemical methods for the evaluation of COX-2, MMP-2 and MMP-9 expression in tissue samples of 30 primary and 10 recurrent skin BCC cases. Results: Immunohistochemical COX-2 expression was significantly higher in the infiltrating pattern of BCC compared with the nodular (P = 0.005) and superficial (P = 0.041) subtypes in the primary BCC group. There was not a significant difference between nodular and superficial BCCs for COX-2 expression. In addition, COX-2 expression was significantly higher in the recurrent BCC group than in the primary BCC group (P = 0.030). There was no statistically significant difference between the histological subtypes of primary BCCs and between primary and recurrent BCCs for MMP-2 and MMP-9 expressions. Conclusions: Our data confirm previous findings that COX-2 and MMP-9 expressions are increased in BCC. Our results revealed an elevated COX-2 expression in recurrent BCCs. We suggest that COX-2 inhibition might have beneficial effects in BCCs, especially for the tumors with a higher level of COX-2 expression or aggressive phenotype.

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