Microvascular density and endothelial area correlate with Ki-67 proliferative index in surgically-treated pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma patients

Michele Ammendola, Rosario Sacco, Ilaria Marech, Giuseppe Sammarco, Valeria Zuccalà, Maria Luposella, Rosa Patruno, Marcella Giordano, Eustachio Ruggieri, Nicola Zizzo, Cosmo Damiano Gadaleta, Girolamo Ranieri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Previous experimental and clinical data have indicated that tumour cell proliferation is associated with angiogenesis; in addition, an increased microvascular density (MVD) of tumours has been associated with poor prognosis in solid and haematological malignancies. However, limited data exists regarding the association between tumour cell proliferation and angiogenesis in primary tumour tissue from pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) patients; therefore, the present study aimed to investigate this association. A series of 31 PDAC patients with stage Tumour (T)2-3 Node (N)0-1 Metastasis (M)0 were recruited into the present study and subsequently underwent surgery. PDAC tissue and adjacent normal tissue (ANT), resected during surgery, were evaluated using immunohistochemistry and image analysis methods to determine MVD, endothelial area (EA) and Ki-67 expression, which is an indicator of cell proliferation rate. The results demonstrated a correlation between the above parameters with each other as well as the main clinico-pathological features of PDAC. Significant differences were identified in MVD, EA and Ki-67 proliferation index between PDAC and ANT. It was demonstrated that MVD, EA and Ki-67 proliferation index were significantly correlated with each other in tumour tissue (r=0.69-0.81; P=0.001-0.003). However, no other significant correlations were identified. These data therefore suggested that angiogenesis and cell proliferation rate were significantly increased in PDAC compared with ANT, which provides a biological basis for the potential use of novel combinations of angiogenesis inhibitors and anti-proliferative chemotherapeutic drugs in the treatment of PDAC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)967-971
Number of pages5
JournalOncology Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Adjacent normal tissue
  • Angiogenesis
  • Endothelial area
  • Ki-67 proliferation index
  • Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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