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Mediators of Inflammation
Volume 2013, Article ID 515048, 7 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/515048
Research Article

Increased Expression of VEGF and CD31 in Postradiation Rectal Tissue: Implications for Radiation Proctitis

1Hepatogastroenterology Unit, 1st Department of Internal Medicine—Propaedeutic, “Laikon” General Hospital, Athens Medical School, 75 Micras Asias Street, Goudi, 11527 Athens, Greece
21st Pathology Laboratory, Athens Medical School, 75 Micras Asias Street, Goudi, 11527 Athens, Greece
3Radiotherapy Unit, 2nd Radiology Department, “Attikon” University General Hospital, Athens Medical School, Rimini 1, Xaidari, 12462 Athens, Greece
42nd Pathology Laboratory, “Attikon” University General Hospital, Athens Medical School, Rimini 1, Xaidari, 12462 Athens, Greece

Received 15 January 2013; Revised 14 March 2013; Accepted 15 March 2013

Academic Editor: David Bernardo Ordiz

Copyright © 2013 G. Karamanolis 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.

Abstract

Background. Inflammation mediators related to radiation proctitis are partially elucidated, and neovascularization is thought to play a key role. Objectives. To investigate the expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and CD31 as angiogenetic markers in postradiation rectal tissue. Methods. Rectal mucosa biopsies from 11 patients who underwent irradiation for prostate cancer were examined immunohistochemically for the expression of VEGF and CD31 at three time settings—before, at the completion of, and 6 months after radiotherapy. VEGF expressing vascular endothelial cells and CD31 expressing microvessels were counted separately in 10 high-power fields (HPFs). VEGF vascular index (VEGF-VI) and microvascular density (MVD) were calculated as the mean number of VEGF positive cells per vessel or the mean number of vessels per HPF, respectively. Histological features were also evaluated. Results. VEGF-VI was significantly higher at the completion of radiotherapy ( versus , ) declining 6 months after. MVD increased significantly only 6 months after radiotherapy ( versus , ). The histopathological examination revealed inflammatory changes at the completion of radiotherapy regressing in the majority of cases 6 months after. Conclusions. Our results showed that in postradiation rectal biopsy specimens neoangiogenesis seems to be inflammation-related and constitutes a significant postradiation component of the tissue injury.