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In glioma, colorectal, breast and gastric cancer, expression of CD133 has been shown to poorly predict prognosis (18-21).
However, in NSCLC the data are conflicting: A study of Salnikov of 88 resected NSCLC demonstrated an association of CD133 with the expression of resistance-related proteins, but not with clinicopathological characteristics, patients‘ survival, expression of proangiogenic cytokines, oncogenes or the proliferative activity and apoptotic susceptibility of the tumor cells (22).
Patients and Methods: The CSC antigens CD117/c-KIT, CD133 and breast cancer resistance protein-1 (BCRP1/ABCG2) were immunohistochemically analyzed in tissues from a total of 133 completely resected stage I/II non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients with a median follow-up time of 53.8 months.
In contrast, Li reported in 145 resected NSCLC stage I patients that CD133/BCRP1 double-positive cases (23%) showed an increased microvessel density, production of proangiogenic cytokines and risk of relapse, while a recent study of Woo on 177 resected stage I adenocarcinomas demonstrated an increased risk of disease recurrence in those with high CD133 expression (24, 25).
Except for CD133, which was overrepresented in T1 tumors (p=0.001), the CSC antigens were not linked to clinico-pathological characteristics or angiogenic features.
Conclusion: In resected early-stage NSCLC, CSC antigens show no association with prognosis.
To shed light on these divergent findings, we analyzed a total of 133 resected early-stage NSCLC patients for the prognostic significance of the CSC antigens CD117, CD133 and BCRP1.
Moreover, the expression of these antigens was related to clinicopathological characteristics and angiogenic features associated with metastasis.
Although various clinicopathological and molecular markers that predict relapse and/or survival in NSCLC have been identified, neither neoadjuvant nor adjuvant treatment regimens have substantially improved the prognosis (3-8).