Aim: To evaluate the significance of the expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), its correlation with clinicopathological variables were studied in the tissue of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and surrounding liver.
Methods: In 56 samples (tumor and non-tumor liver tissue) collected from 28 patients, VEGF expression was examined by immunohistochemistry and western blot analysis.
Results: The value of VEGF expression by western blotting was correlated with immunohistochemical staining grade. In tumor tissue, the value of VEGF expression correlated with tumor size (P = 0.034), á-fetoprotein (P = 0.036) and protein induced by vitamin K absence-II by simple regression, and histological grade (P = 0.0132) by the unpaired t-test. The level of VEGF expression in non-tumor liver was found to correlate with the value of serum albumin (P = 0.008), cholinesterase (P = 0.012) and prothrombin activity (P = 0.046). The frequency of simple nodular type in gross appearance decreased in cases with high tumor/non-tumor (T/N) ratio (P = 0.022), and the degree of portal vein invasion progressed with an increase in the T/N ratio (P = 0.008). The T/N ratio was significantly higher in early recurrence cases (P = 0.0081).
Conclusion: This study on the expression of VEGF might be useful to estimate the liver condition and the clinicopathological features of HCC.