Korean J Pathol.  2008 Dec;42(6):381-388.

The Prognostic Significance of Neuroendocrine Differentiation for Treating Prostatic Carcinoma in 699 Cases of Radical Prostatectomy

  • 1Department of Pathology, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seongnam, Korea. gychoe@anu.ac.kr


BACKGROUND: Neuroendocrine differentiation of prostatic carcinoma is known to be associated with a poor prognosis, tumor progression and androgen-independency, and there is currently no successful therapy for this type of tumor. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the prognostic implications of neuroendocrine differentiation in prostatic carcinoma in Korean men. METHODS: Six hundreds and ninety nine consecutive cases of radical prostatectomy specimens were systematically processed for topographic mapping. Neuroendocrine differentiation was detected by immunohistochemistry by using antibody to chromogranin. We analyzed the relationship between neuroendocrine differentiation and the clinicopathological prognostic factors, as well as biochemical failure. The neuroendocrine differentiation was evaluated according to the presence of chromogranin-positive cells, the pattern of neuroendocrine cells and the number of neuroendocrine cells, respectively. RESULTS: Neuroendocrine differentiation was detected in 150 out of 699 cases (21.5%). The presence of neuroendocrine differentiation as well as the pattern of neuroendocrine cells was correlated with biochemical failure and the other clinicopathological prognostic factors such as the Gleason score, the pathologic stage, the tumor volume, angiolymphatic invasion, perineural invasion, and the Ki-67 proliferative index (p<0.05). CONCLUSIONS: We suggest that neuroendocrine differentiation of prostatic carcinoma is a prognostic factor even in radical prostatectomy specimens for localized prostate cancer. Evaluation of the presence of neuroendocrine differentiation as well as the pattern of neuroendocrine cells is recommended in radical prostatectomy specimens.


Prostate; Carcinoma; Neuroendocrine tumor; Chromogranin; Prognosis
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