(1/364) Collagenase-3 (MMP-13) is expressed by tumor cells in invasive vulvar squamous cell carcinomas.

Collagenase-3 (MMP-13) is a human matrix metalloproteinase specifically expressed by invading tumor cells in squamous cell carcinomas (SCCs) of the head and neck. Here, we have further elucidated the role of MMP-13 in tumor invasion by examining its expression in invasive malignant tumors of the female genital tract. Using in situ hybridization, expression of MMP-13 mRNA was detected in 9 of 12 vulvar SCCs, primarily in tumor cells, but not in intact vulvar epithelium, in cervical SCCs (n = 12), or in endometrial (n = 11) or ovarian adenocarcinomas (n = 8). MMP-13 expression was especially abundant in vulvar carcinomas showing metastasis to lymph nodes and was associated with expression of membrane type 1 MMP by tumor cells and gelatinase-A (MMP-2) by stromal cells, as detected by immunohistochemistry. MMP-13 mRNAs were detected in 9 of 11 cell lines established from vulvar carcinomas and in 4 of 6 cell lines from cervical carcinomas, whereas endometrial (n = 10) and ovarian (n = 9) carcinoma cell lines were negative for MMP-13 mRNA. No correlation was detected between MMP-13 expression and p53 gene mutations in vulvar SCC cell lines. However, MMP-13 expression was detected in 5 of 6 vulvar and cervical SCC cell lines harboring HPV 16 or 68 DNA. These results show that MMP-13 is specifically expressed by malignantly transformed squamous epithelial cells, including vulvar SCC cells, and appears to serve as a marker for their invasive capacity.  (+info)

(2/364) Impact of a national audit project on gynaecologists in Scotland.

The objectives of the study were (a) to determine consultant gynaecologists' awareness of and views on a national audit project (the gynaecology audit project in Scotland) and (b) to measure changes in their reported practice in relation to 12 specific elements of care related to three audit topics (induced abortion, endometriosis, and vulvar carcinoma) for which recommendations for change had been made within the project. The study comprised a postal questionnaire survey of all 128 consultant gynaecologists in NHS practice in Scotland. The response rate was 90%. Of the respondents, 96% (109/113) recalled receiving feedback material from the audit project team and around 75% (range 66/89 to 84/105) had retained feedback reports for future reference. For the two more common clinical topics (induced abortion and endometriosis), over two thirds of the respondents indicated that they had been prompted to reconsider or change aspects of practice. Significant changes in reported practice, in line with project recommendations, were found for seven of the 12 specific elements of care examined. Thus, gynaecologists in Scotland showed a high level of awareness of and positive views towards a national audit project. Significant changes in reported practice, in accordance with circulated recommendations, were measurable in relation to several elements of clinical care.  (+info)

(3/364) Vulvodynia and vulvar vestibulitis: challenges in diagnosis and management.

Vulvodynia is a problem most family physicians can expect to encounter. It is a syndrome of unexplained vulvar pain, frequently accompanied by physical disabilities, limitation of daily activities, sexual dysfunction and psychologic distress. The patient's vulvar pain usually has an acute onset and, in most cases, becomes a chronic problem lasting months to years. The pain is often described as burning or stinging, or a feeling of rawness or irritation. Vulvodynia may have multiple causes, with several subsets, including cyclic vulvovaginitis, vulvar vestibulitis syndrome, essential (dysesthetic) vulvodynia and vulvar dermatoses. Evaluation should include a thorough history and physical examination as well as cultures for bacteria and fungus, KOH microscopic examination and biopsy of any suspicious areas. Proper treatment mandates that the correct type of vulvodynia be identified. Depending on the specific diagnosis, treatment may include fluconazole, calcium citrate, tricyclic antidepressants, topical corticosteroids, physical therapy with biofeedback, surgery or laser therapy. Since vulvodynia is often a chronic condition, regular medical follow-up and referral to a support group are helpful for most patients.  (+info)

(4/364) Epithelioid leiomyoma of the vulva.

Smooth muscle tumors are uncommon lesions of the vulva and represent a variety of histologic types. When encountered, surgical treatment is guided by the malignant potential of the tumors. This article presents the case of a 45-year-old woman who underwent conservative excision of a 10-cm vulvar lesion consistent with benign epithelioid leiomyoma. This unusual case provides an opportunity to review the clinical and pathologic features of this uncommon variant of leiomyoma and to describe the recently suggested pathologic criteria for determining the malignant potential of smooth muscle tumors arising in the vulva. Knowledge of these criteria can guide the clinician in selecting the appropriate management.  (+info)

(5/364) CYP2D6 genotype and the incidence of anal and vulvar cancer.

The risks of anal and vulvar cancer are strongly related to cigarette smoking. Smokers are exposed to a substantial quantity of tobacco-specific nitrosamines, including 4-(methylnitrosamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone (NNK). NNK is present in the mucus of the female genital tract. The enzyme debrisoquine 4-hydroxylase (CYP2D6) activates NNK and is present in foreskin kerotinocytes and cervical epithelial cells. A polymorphism for the gene CYP2D6 exists, and persons who possess alleles that are associated with reduced levels of CYP2D6 activity might be expected to be at a relatively lower risk of cancers arising from NNK exposure. To test this hypothesis, we conducted a case-control study to examine the association of CYP2D6 genotype and the incidence of anal and vulvar cancer among cigarette smokers in western Washington State. We tested for 14 alleles (*1-*12, *14, and *17) among cases (25 men and 43 women with anal cancer, 64 women with vulvar cancer) and controls (30 men and 110 women). Contrary to the hypothesis, cases were not less likely than controls to have one (43.9 versus 40.7%) or two (6.8 versus 4.3%) inactivating alleles (*3, *4, *5, *6, *7, *8, *11, or *12). There was a suggestion that, if anything, the combined anal and vulvar cancer risk increased (rather than decreased) with an increasing number of CYP2D6 inactivation alleles: odds ratio = 1.2, 95% confidence interval = 0.7-2.0 with one inactivating allele; odds ratio = 1.8, 95% confidence interval = 0.6-5.4 with two inactivating alleles. These results provide no support for the hypothesis that cigarette smokers who carry the CYP2D6 alleles that result in a low activity phenotype have a decreased risk of anogenital cancer.  (+info)

(6/364) Allelic loss in human papillomavirus-positive and -negative vulvar squamous cell carcinomas.

Vulvar squamous cell carcinoma (VSCC) is a biologically and morphologically diverse disease, consisting of human papillomavirus (HPV)-positive and -negative tumors that differ in their morphological phenotypes and associated vulvar mucosal disorders. This study analyzed the frequencies of allelic loss (loss of heterozygosity (LOH)) in HPV-positive and -negative VSCCs to identify potential targets for the study of preinvasive diseases, to determine whether HPV status influenced patterns of LOH, and to determine whether these patterns differed from HPV-positive tumors of another genital site, cervical squamous cell carcinomas (CSCC). DNA extracted from microdissected archival sections of two index tumors, one each HPV negative and positive, was analyzed for LOH at 65 chromosomal loci. Loci scoring positive with either sample were included in an analysis of 14 additional cases that were also typed for HPV. Frequencies of LOH at loci were computed in a panel of HPV-positive and -negative VSCCs. Twenty-nine loci demonstrated LOH on the initial screen and were used to screen the remaining 14 tumors. High frequencies of LOH were identified, some of which were similar to a prior karyotypic study (3p, 5q, 8p, 10q, 15q, 18q, and 22q) and others of which had not previously been described in VSCC (1q, 2q, 8q, 10p, 11p, 11q, 17p, and 21q). With the exception of 5q and 10p, there were no significant associations between frequency of LOH and HPV status in VSCC. LOH at 3p and 11q were frequent in both VSCC and CSCC; however, allelic losses at several sites, including 5q, 8q, 17p, 21q, and 22q, were much more common in VSCC. VSCCs exhibit a broad range of allelic losses irrespective of HPV status, with high frequencies of LOH on certain chromosomal arms. This suggests that despite their differences in pathogenesis, both HPV-positive and -negative VSCCs share similarities in type and range of genetic losses during their evolution. Whether the different frequencies of LOH observed between VSCC and CSCC are real or reflect differences in stage and/or tumor size remains to be determined by further comparisons. The role of these altered genetic loci in the genesis of preinvasive vulvar mucosal lesions merits additional study.  (+info)

(7/364) In squamous cell carcinoma of the vulva, overexpression of p53 is a late event and neither p53 nor mdm2 expression is a useful marker to predict lymph node metastases.

To offer more tailored treatment to individual patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the vulva, more accurate prediction of lymph node metastases is required. As p53 and mdm2 are genes known to be involved in the development of other tumours, we studied expression of p53 and mdm2 in carcinogenesis of squamous cell carcinoma of the vulva and their clinical relevance. Archival material of 141 T1 and T2 vulvar tumours were used. Of the 141 primary tumours, the corresponding 39 lymph node metastases (LNM) were studied, and in 90 cases the pre-existent epithelia adjacent to the tumour (EAT) and in 14 cases vulvar intraepithelial neoplasia adjacent to the tumour (VIN) was also investigated. Detection of p53 and mdm2 protein was immunohistochemically performed. Scoring categories were: negative (1); weakly positive (2); moderately to markedly positive (3); and markedly positive (4). Overexpression of p53 was seen in 56% of the LNM, 39% of the primary tumours, 21% of the VIN lesions and 0% in the group of EAT. No relation was found between overexpression of p53 in the primary tumour and LNM. Expression of mdm2 was seen in 14% of the primary tumours, of which four cases were marked positive. In the group of LNM no mdm2-positive staining was observed. In the group of EAT, 25% was mdm2-positive, of which six cases were marked positive. In the group of VIN, 36% showed moderate (score 3) mdm2 expression. No relation was found between expression of mdm2 and LNM. In squamous cell carcinoma, overexpression of p53 is a late event in carcinogenesis. Marked expression of mdm2 is rarely seen in vulvar carcinomas, indicating that aberrant p53 cannot induce mdm2 expression. LNM cannot be predicted by detection of these proteins.  (+info)

(8/364) Glutathione S-transferase M1 genotypes and the risk of vulvar cancer: a population-based case-control study.

Glutathione S-transferases (GSTs) facilitate the excretion of a variety of potential carcinogens. Some 50-60% of Caucasians are homozygous for the null allele of GSTM1, a gene responsible for the presence of one of these enzymes. The authors examined whether women with the GSTM1 null genotype are at altered risk of vulvar cancer. They obtained peripheral blood specimens from 18- to 79-year-old residents of King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties of western Washington who were diagnosed with vulvar cancer between April 1991 and June 1994. Blood specimens were also obtained from controls identified via random digit telephone dialing of western Washington households. The authors determined the GSTM1 genotype of 137 cases (120 in situ and 17 invasive cases) and 248 controls. The frequency of the GSTM1 null genotype was 46.7% among cases and 57.3% among controls. The age-adjusted odds ratio associated with the GSTM1 null genotype was 0.7 (95% confidence interval: 0.4, 1.0). Among current smokers of cigarettes, the age-adjusted odds ratio associated with the GSTM1 null genotype was 0.5 (95% confidence interval: 0.2, 0.9), differing little between heavy and light smokers. Our data suggest that women with the GSTM1 null genotype are not at increased risk of vulvar cancer.  (+info)