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Pathology Research International
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 6794150, 7 pages
Research Article

Immunohistochemical Investigation of HER/AKT/mTOR Pathway and Cellular Adhesion Molecules in Urothelial Carcinomas

1Urology Department, Interbalkan Medical Center, Thessaloniki, Greece
2Pathology Department, Medical School, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, Greece
3Laboratory of Biochemistry, School of Medicine, Democritus University of Thrace, Alexandroupolis, Greece
4Urology Department, School of Medicine, Democritus University of Thrace, Alexandroupolis, Greece
5Laboratory of Histology-Embryology, School of Medicine, Democritus University of Thrace, Alexandroupolis, Greece

Correspondence should be addressed to Triantafyllia Koletsa

Received 30 October 2016; Accepted 29 December 2016; Published 22 January 2017

Academic Editor: Marco Volante

Copyright © 2017 Nikolaos Koletsas 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.


Background. Several investigators have suggested the possibility that the expression of both EGFR and HER2 could be utilized for molecularly targeted therapy in urinary bladder cancer. We tried to evaluate the expression of HER2 and EGFR and activation of the AKT/PTEN/mTOR pathway in urothelial carcinomas and if there is any association between them and cellular adhesion molecules (CAMs). Materials and Methods. Forty-one paraffin-embedded urothelial cancer tissue blocks were collected. Immunostains for HER2, EGFR, MIB1, phospho-AKT, PTEN, phospho-mTOR, e-cadherin, p-cadherin, and b-catenin were performed on tissue microarrays sections. The immunohistochemical results were correlated with clinicopathological parameters. Results. The overexpression of HER2 was found in 19.6% of the cases and it was associated with high grade tumors with a high mitotic index and phosphorylation of AKT and mTOR. Muscle-invasive tumors presented both cytoplasmic and nuclear losses of PTEN expression. There was no association between HER/AKT/mTOR pathway activation and CAM expression. Although cadherins were often coexpressed, only p-cadherin immunoreactivity was associated with tumor grade and high proliferative index. Conclusions. HER2 overexpression is found in a respective proportion of urothelial carcinomas. P-cadherin expression is associated with high grade UCs but it is not affected by HER2 overexpression or by activation of HER/AKT/mTOR pathway.