Patterns of p73 N-terminal isoform expression and p53 status have prognostic value in gynecological cancers
Affiliations: Department of Pathology, State University of New York at Stony Brook, Stony Brook, NY, USA
- Published online on: October 1, 2006 https://doi.org/10.3892/ijo.29.4.889
- Pages: 889-902
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The goal of this study was to determine whether patterns of expression profiles of p73 isoforms and of p53 mutational status are useful combinatorial biomarkers for predicting outcome in a gynecological cancer cohort. This is the first such study using matched tumor/normal tissue pairs from each patient. The median follow-up was over two years. The expression of all 5 N-terminal isoforms (TAp73, ΔNp73, ΔN'p73, Ex2p73 and Ex2/3p73) was measured by real-time RT-PCR and p53 status was analyzed by immunohistochemistry. TAp73, ΔNp73 and ΔN'p73 were significantly upregulated in tumors. Surprisingly, their range of overexpression was age-dependent, with the highest differences δ (tumor-normal) in the youngest age group. Correction of this age effect was important in further survival correlations. We used all 6 variables (five p73 isoform levels plus p53 status) as input into a principal component analysis with Varimax rotation (VrPCA) to filter out noise from non-disease related individual variability of p73 levels. Rationally selected and individually weighted principal components from each patient were then used to train a support vector machine (SVM) algorithm to predict clinical outcome. This SVM algorithm was able to predict correct outcome in 30 of the 35 patients. We use here a mathematical tool for pattern recognition that has been commonly used in e.g. microarray data mining and apply it for the first time in a prognostic model. We find that PCA/SVM is able to test a clinical hypothesis with robust statistics and show that p73 expression profiles and p53 status are useful prognostic biomarkers that differentiate patients with good vs. poor prognosis with gynecological cancers.