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Revista Española de Cirugía Oral y Maxilofacial

On-line version ISSN 2173-9161Print version ISSN 1130-0558


DIAZ PRADO, S. et al. Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and epidermal growth factor (EGF) in oral premalignant epithelial lesions. Rev Esp Cirug Oral y Maxilofac [online]. 2009, vol.31, n.3, pp.170-181. ISSN 2173-9161.

Oral premalignant lesions include leukoplakia (white patch) and erythroplakia (red patch), which develop on epithelial surfaces. These lesions are markers for field cancerization because patients with oral premalignancy can develop squamous cell carcinoma at the site of the lesion(s) and at other sites in the upper aerodigestive tract. An effort is being made to identify surrogate endpoint biomarkers (SEBs) for head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). Candidate SEBs for invasive squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) of the upper aerodigestive tract are detectable molecular, cellular, and tissue changes that take place during tumorigenesis. Among the markers that have been proposed to date, cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) seem to be the most promising. COX-2 is overexpressed during tumor transformation from early hyperplasia to metastasic disease. EGFR is also abnormally activated in epithelial tumors, since cells of almost all these kinds of neoplasm express high levels of this receptor, a characteristic associated with poor clinical outcome. The upper aerodigestive tract provides a unique model for studying the development of squamous cell carcinoma and for investigating candidate SEBs.

Keywords : Epidermal growth factor; Cyclooxygenase-2; Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma; Oral premalignant lesion; Biomarker; Field cancerization.

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