• cortactin;
  • esophageal squamous cell carcinoma;
  • fascin;
  • immunostaining scores;
  • survivin


Cortactin, fascin, and survivin have been documented in several human cancers and play important roles in tumor progression. We collected 57 surgical specimens, including esophageal squamous cell carcinomas (SqCC; 7 well-differentiated, 15 moderately differentiated, and 24 poorly differentiated), 3 dysplasias, and 8 normal esophageal tissues. Tissue microarrays were constructed and the immunostaining scores for cortactin, fascin, and survivin were assessed. In 46 SqCC specimens, we examined the relationship between the expression of three biomarkers and tumor differentiation or clinical parameters. Higher immunostaining scores for cortactin, fascin, and survivin correlated positively with tumor differentiation of esophageal SqCC. Univariate survival analysis showed significantly worse prognosis in patients with high scores of cortactin (≥290), fascin (≥245), and survivin (score ≥ 175), poor differentiation, T4 stage, positive for lymph node metastasis, and positive for distant metastasis. In multivariate survival analysis, high scores of survivin (≥175) and poor differentiation were independent risk factors for worse prognosis. Our results demonstrated that higher expression of survivin may be related to tumor progression and it is an independent risk factor for poor survival time of esophageal SqCC. Survivin may be a good biomarker to be applied in clinic to predict the prognosis of esophageal SqCC.