Sex hormone receptors in benign and malignant salivary gland tumors: Prognostic and predictive role

Gabriella Aquino, Francesca Collina, Rocco Sabatino, Margherita Cerrone, Francesco Longo, Franco Ionna, Nunzia Simona Losito, Rossella De Cecio, Monica Cantile, Giuseppe Pannone, Gerardo Botti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The role of sex hormone receptors in human cancer development and progression has been well documented in numerous studies, as has the success of sex hormone antagonists in the biological therapy of many human tumors. In salivary gland tumors (SGTs), little and conflicting information about the role of the estrogen receptor alpha (ERα), progesterone receptor (PgR) and androgen receptor (AR) has been described and in most cases the use of sex hormone antagonists is not contemplated in clinical practice. In this study, we analyzed a panel of sex hormone receptors that have not been widely investigated in SGTs—ERα, PgR, AR, but also ERβ and GPR30—to define their expression pattern and their prognostic and predictive value in a case series of 69 benign and malignant SGTs. We showed the aberrant expression of AR in mucoepidermoid and oncocytic carcinoma, a strong relation between cytoplasmic ERβ expression and tumor grade, and a strong correlation between nuclear GPR30 expression and disease-free survival (DFS) of SGT patients.

Original languageEnglish
Article number399
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2018


  • Salivary gland tumors
  • Sex hormone receptors
  • Therapeutic targets

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry

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