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International Journal of Endocrinology
Volume 2014, Article ID 989574, 12 pages
Research Article

Correlations of Vascular Architecture and Angiogenesis with Pituitary Adenoma Histotype

Department of Neurosurgery, Faculty of Medicine, University of Tsukuba, 1-1-1 Tennodai, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8575, Japan

Received 17 July 2014; Accepted 16 October 2014; Published 9 November 2014

Academic Editor: Daizo Yoshida

Copyright © 2014 Shingo Takano et al. 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.


Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is a potent angiogenic factor in solid tumors. However, its role in angiogenesis in pituitary adenoma is controversial. Angiogenesis in solid tumors including pituitary adenoma is commonly evaluated by microvascular density (MVD). Here, we evaluated MVD and the role of VEGF in vascular architecture in 51 pituitary adenomas (24 nonfunctioning, 13 prolactin-secreting, 10 growth hormone-secreting, 3 adrenocorticotropic hormone-secreting, and 1 thyroid-stimulating hormone-secreting). Paraffin sections were stained with CD34 and VEGF. MVD and vascular architecture parameters (vessel area, diameter, perimeter, and roundness) were evaluated in CD34-stained sections. Immunohistochemistry showed 27/51 tumors (53%) were VEGF-positive. There were no significant differences in MVD, any vascular parameter, or adenoma volume between VEGF-positive and VEGF-negative tumors. VEGF mRNA expression was significantly higher in VEGF-positive tumors. There were no significant correlations between VEGF mRNA expression and MVD or vascular parameters. However, vessel diameter and perimeter were significantly larger in prolactin-secreting than nonfunctioning and growth hormone-secreting macroadenomas. The difference in vessel diameter was observed among both VEGF-positive and all adenomas (micro- and macroadenoma). Thus, VEGF may have limited roles in the development of vascular architecture and tumor angiogenesis in pituitary adenomas, but the differences in vessel architecture by histotype (i.e., larger vessel diameter and perimeter in prolactin-secreting adenomas) suggest the hormonal regulation of vessel architecture rather than angiogenesis