Heterogeneous expression of α-methylacyl-CoA racemase in prostatic cancer correlates with Gleason score
Article first published online: 3 JAN 2007
Volume 50, Issue 2, pages 243–251, January 2007
How to Cite
Murphy, A. J., Hughes, C. A., Lannigan, G., Sheils, O., O'Leary, J. and Loftus, B. (2007), Heterogeneous expression of α-methylacyl-CoA racemase in prostatic cancer correlates with Gleason score. Histopathology, 50: 243–251. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2559.2007.02572.x
- Issue published online: 3 JAN 2007
- Article first published online: 3 JAN 2007
- Date of submission 30 December 2005 Accepted for publication 4 April 2006
- benign prostatic hyperplasia;
- prostatic cancer
Aims: α-Methylacyl-CoA racemase (AMACR) is a sensitive and specific immunohistochemical marker of prostatic malignancy, staining 80–100% of prostatic cancers with absent staining in benign glands. However, positive staining in benign conditions as well as low rates of AMACR reactivity in prostatic cancer variants have been described. Preliminary use of AMACR immunohistochemistry in our institution has suggested lower specificity and sensitivity for prostatic cancer than initially proposed. The aim of this study was to establish true rates of AMACR reactivity in prostatic cancer and benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH).
Methods and results: AMACR immunohistochemistry was performed on sections from 57 prostatic cancers and 44 BPH resections. Ninety-one percent of cancers were AMACR+, with diffuse (> 75%) tumour staining in 53% of cases. Thirty-eight percent of tumours showed heterogeneous expression (1–75% tumour staining). This was significantly correlated with increased Gleason score. High-grade prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PIN) was AMACR+ in 87% of cancers. Eleven percent of BPH showed moderate or strong staining in benign glands, focally mimicking the malignant staining pattern.
Conclusions: This study confirms heterogeneous AMACR expression in prostatic cancer and shows a correlation with Gleason score. Positive staining in BPH is also documented, thus emphasizing the importance of interpreting AMACR immunohistochemistry in the context of other findings in a diagnostic setting.