Analytical Cellular Pathology

Analytical Cellular Pathology / 2009 / Article

Open Access

Volume 31 |Article ID 267928 | 10 pages |

Genetic Classification of Oral and Oropharyngeal Carcinomas Identifies Subgroups with a Different Prognosis


The common risk factors for oral and oropharyngeal cancer are tobacco smoking and alcohol consumption, and recently the human papillomavirus (HPV) was shown to be involved in a subgroup. HPV-positive and -negative carcinomas can be distinguished on basis of their genetic profiles. Aim of this study was to investigate patterns of chromosomal aberrations of HPV-negative oral and oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinomas (OOSCC) in order to improve stratification of patients regarding outcome. Thirty-nine OOSCCs were classified on basis of their genetic pattern determined by array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH). Resulting groups were related to patient and tumor characteristics using the Fisher’s exact test and in addition to survival with the Kaplan–Meier and log rank tests. Classification distinguished three groups, one characterized by hardly any chromosomal aberration (N = 8) and another by a relatively high level (N = 26), and one with a very high level (N = 5) of chromosomal aberrations. This classification was significantly (p = 0.003) associated with survival, with the best survival in the genetically ‘silent’ group and the worst survival in the most aberrant group. The silent profile was significantly (p < 0.05) associated with wild-type TP53, an absence of alcohol consumption and a female gender. These carcinomas were negative for microsatellite instability. This classification of OOSCC was confirmed in an independent set of 89 oral carcinomas. In conclusion, the discovery of these new classes of oral and oropharyngeal cancer with unique genetic and clinical characteristics has important consequences for future basic and clinical studies.

Copyright © 2009 Hindawi Publishing Corporation and the authors. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

More related articles

121 Views | 224 Downloads | 44 Citations
 PDF  Download Citation  Citation
 Order printed copiesOrder

Related articles

We are committed to sharing findings related to COVID-19 as quickly and safely as possible. Any author submitting a COVID-19 paper should notify us at to ensure their research is fast-tracked and made available on a preprint server as soon as possible. We will be providing unlimited waivers of publication charges for accepted articles related to COVID-19. Sign up here as a reviewer to help fast-track new submissions.