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p53 expression, Ki-67 status, and cell density have no prognostic significance in glioblastomas treated with radio-chemotherapy

  • M.W. Gross (a1), K. Nashwan (a1), H.-D. Mennel (a2) and R. Engenhart-Cabillic (a1)


Purpose: To identify subgroups in glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) with different susceptibilities to radio-chemotherapy by p53 protein and Ki-67 expression.

Patients and Methods: Thirty-one patients with primary GBM underwent a combined radio-chemotherapy with topotecan. Percentage of cells expressing p53 protein and Ki-67 antigen was determined immunohistochemically. Additionally, the cell density within the tumour tissue was measured.

Results: Median percentages of p53 and Ki-67 expressing cells were 4.3% (range = 0–28%) and 12.0% (range = 0–28%), respectively. Dividing the cases into two groups by high or low p53 protein 1-year disease-free survival rates were 13.3% and 23.6%. High or low Ki-67 expression showed one-year disease-free survival rates of 18.8% and 17.1%. Neither p53 nor Ki-67 expression showed a significant correlation with disease-free survival or overall survival. Median cell density was 252 cells/field (range = 42–595). 1-year disease-free survival rates were 14.5% and 21.7% in high and low cell density group, respectively. A significant correlation with progression-free survival was observed, whereas the stratification into two groups revealed no significance. Cell density showed a significant inverse correlation with p53 and Ki-67 immunopositivity.

Conclusion:p53 protein and Ki-67 expression seem to be inappropriate for the estimation of prognosis in patients receiving a combined radio-chemotherapy with topotecan.


Corresponding author

Correspondence to: Markus W. Gross MD, Department of Radiotherapy and Radio-Oncology, University of Giessen and Marburg, Baldingerstr. D-35033 Marburg, Germany. E-mail:
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Journal of Radiotherapy in Practice
  • ISSN: 1460-3969
  • EISSN: 1467-1131
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-radiotherapy-in-practice
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