J Korean Assoc Maxillofac Plast Reconstr Surg.  2007 Jan;29(1):10-23.

Comparative immunohistochemical assays for the expression of angiogenic factors in tumors of human salivary glands

  • 1Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, College of Dentistry, Kangnung National University, Korea. ywpark@kangnung.ac.kr


Hallmarks of clinical behaviors of adenoid cystic carcinoma(ACC) of salivary glands are the delayed onset of vascular metastasis and poor responses to classical chemotherapeutic agents. Poor prognoses from salivary ACC are caused by lung metastases that are resistant to conventional therapy. Therefore, cellular and molecular characteristics that influence the dissemination of metastatic cells are important for the design of more effective treatment of salivary ACC. Tumor angiogenesis has been known to be essential for the distant metastasis of malignant cells. So, we determined expressions of angiogenic proteins in benign (pleomorphic adenoma) and malignant (ACC, mucoepidermoid carcinoma) tumors of salivary glands and compared each other and to those in oral squamous cell carcinoma. Using surgical specimens, we performed immunohistochemical assays with anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), VEGF receptor-2 (VEGFR-2), phosphorylated VEGFR-2 (pVEGFR-2), matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-9, and interleukin (IL)-8 antibodies. Most angiogenic factors were overexpressed in malignant salivary tumors than in pleomorphic adenoma which is benign nature. Moreover, ACC demonstrated more expression of VEGFR-2 than that of squamous cell carcinoma which used as control. Conclusively, these data show those angiogenic factors produced by salivary gland tumors may affect the propagation and metastasis of malignant cells of salivary tumors, and could be used as biomarkers for the malignant transformation of salivary gland tumors. Prospectively, although further studies will be needed, these biomarkers related to angiogenesis can be molecular targets for the therapy of salivary ACC, which has propensity for delayed vascular metastasis.


Adenoid cystic carcinoma; Angiogenic factor; Vascular metastasis; Molecular target

MeSH Terms

Adenoma, Pleomorphic
Angiogenesis Inducing Agents*
Angiogenic Proteins
Carcinoma, Adenoid Cystic
Carcinoma, Squamous Cell
Endothelial Growth Factors
Neoplasm Metastasis
Salivary Glands*
Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Receptor-2
Angiogenesis Inducing Agents
Angiogenic Proteins
Endothelial Growth Factors
Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Receptor-2
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