Objective. Cancer cells have increased rates of glucose metabolism when compared to normal cells. One of the mechanisms proposed for the accelerated glucose use in malignant cells is the overexpression of glucose transporters. In this study we evaluated the expression of the GLUT-1 glucose transporter in borderline and malignant epithelial neoplasms of the ovary. Methods. Histologic sections of tumor tissues from 21 borderline and 82 malignant epithelial neoplasms of the ovary were stained for GLUT-1 using polyclonal GLUT-1 antibody (Dako, Carpinteria, CA) and the labeled streptavidin biotin procedure. DAB was used as chromagen and tissues were counterstained with hematoxylin. Results. Normal ovarian surface epithelial cells were either negative or weakly positive. Of the 82 carcinomas, 81 (98.8%) were positive for GLUT-1. The staining intensity was significantly associated with the grade of tumor (P = 0.001). Of the 21 borderline neoplasms, 20 (95.2%) were positive for GLUT-1. Carcinomas had a significantly stronger stain than borderline tumors (P = 0.0001). The intensity of the stain was also stronger in serous carcinomas compared to other subtypes (P = 0.0001). Positive cells demonstrated a cytoplasmic membrane staining that was more intense in tumor cells farther away from blood supply. Conclusion. Overexpression of the GLUT-1 transporter is associated with the histology and grade of the tumors. Our findings show a progressive increase in the expression of the GLUT-1 transporter from the borderline tumor to the high-grade carcinomas. These data suggest that the expression of this transporter may be closely related to the malignant transformation of epithelial ovarian tumors. (C) 2000 Academic Press.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Obstetrics and Gynecology