Tuberc Respir Dis.  1995 Aug;42(4):513-521.

Clinical Significance of Argyrophilic Nucleolar Organizer Regions(AgNORs) in Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Lung

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Institute of Medical Science, Keimyung University School of Medicine, Taegu, Korea.
  • 2Department of Pathology, Institute of Medical Science, Keimyung University School of Medicine, Taegu, Korea.

Abstract

BACKGROUND
Nucleolar organizer regions(NORs) are chromosomal segments encoding for ribosomal RNA and associated with argyrophilic nonhistone protein. Ribosomal RNA genes ultimately direct ribosome and protein synthesis, and it has been suggested the numbers of NORs detected in the cell may reflect nuclear and cellular activity. This study was performed to evaluate the applicability of AgNORs to the diagnosis of squamous cell carcinoma of the lung. METHOD: The one step silver methods(AgNORs) was used to stain NORs in the routinely processed, formalin fixed, paraffin embedded sections of 36 cases of squamous cell carcinoma of the lung obtained by surgical resection of primary tumor. In each specimen, 100 tumor cells and 100 normal cells adjacent to the tumor chosen at random were examined under an oil immersion lens at a magnification of X1000. The mean number of AgNORs per nucleus was calculated for each specimen.
RESULTS
The mean number of AgNORs per nucleus(mAgNORs) of normal bronchial epithelium and squamous cell carcinoma of the lung was 1.74+/-0.25 and 4.05+/-0.80, respectively. The difference of mAgNOR between normal and tumor tissue was statistically significant(p<0.001). There was no statistical difference among tumors of different stages. The difference of mAgNOR between normal and tumor tissue was statistically significant in each TNM stage(p<0.05).
CONCLUSION
Mean AgNOR count may be used as a useful marker for the differential diagnosis of benignancy and malignancy, and proliferative activity of the cell in squamous cell carcinoma of the lung. But there was no statistical difference in mean AgNOR count among tumors of different surgical stages. Further studies for the application of mAgNORs to the diagnosis of other histologic types and cytologic specimens of the lung cancer are needed.

Keyword

Nucleolar organizer region; Squamous cell lung cancer; Proliferative activity
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