• Tissue array;
  • epithelial ovarian cancer;
  • p53;
  • immunohistochemistry;
  • prognosis

The clinical roles played by normal and altered p53 in cancer are under intensive investigation, but larger studies describing the pattern as well as the prognostic value are still needed. The aim of this study was, using tissue array (TA), to examine the overexpression of p53 protein in 774 epithelial ovarian tumour tissues from Danish women and to evaluate whether p53 tissue expression levels correlate with clinicopathological parameters and prognosis. The distribution of p53 expression levels at different stages of disease, in different histological subtypes, and the prognostic value of p53 tissue expression were examined. Overall, p53 was expressed in 24/189 (13%) low malignant potential ovarian tumours (LMP) and in 278/585 (48%) ovarian cancers (OC). No significant difference in frequency of p53 tissue expression in LMP tissue was noted with increasing tumour stage (p=0.98). By contrast, there was a significant increase in the frequency of p53 tissue expression in OC with increasing FIGO stage (p<0.00001). Multivariate Cox regression analysis found that less than 20% tissue expression of p53 was associated with longer OC disease-specific survival. Tissue p53 expression may be of prognostic value in women with OC.