Aims: Apoptosis is mediated by apoptosis-specific genes, certain oncogenes and tumour suppressor genes. Caspase-3, a group of cystein proteases, is involved in the induction of apoptosis and has been considered to correlate with apoptosis. The aim of this study was to determine whether caspase-3 is expressed in prostatic carcinoma and benign prostatic hyperplasia, and correlated with the apoptosis. Methods and results: We studied the apoptotic index and caspase-3 immunoreactivity in 40 cases of benign nodular hyperplasia (BPH) and 40 cases of prostate carcinoma (PCA) by in-situ labelling and immunohistochemistry. The mean number of apoptotic bodies in cases with BPH was not significantly different from cases with PCA I (Gleason score 2-4), but samples from patients with PCA II (Gleason score 5-7) and PCA III (Gleason score 8-10) showed a significantly higher apoptotic number than cases with BPH. Positive staining for caspase-3 was seen in 42.5% (17/40) of the BPH, and 27.5% (11/40) of the PCA: PCA I was 41.7% (5/12). PCA II 14.3% (2/14) and PCA III was 28.6% (4/14). Conclusions: Based on our results, the number of apoptotic bodies was not correlated with the caspase-3 expression and there was no relationship between caspase-3 expression and Gleason score. However, the number of apoptotic bodies was significantly higher in cases with intermediate (Gleason score 5-7) and high-grade (Gleason score 8-10) PCAs than cases with BPH and low-grade PCAs (Gleason score 2-4).
- Gleason score
- Prostatic carcinoma
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine
- Cell Biology