OBJECTIVE: To determine the utility of immunohistochemical staining for p53 in cell block material for distinguishing reactive mesothelium from borderline or low grade ovarian carcinoma. STUDY DESIGN: Paraffin-embedded cell blocks from paracentesis and pelvic wash fluid of 44 cases of ovarian carcinoma and 20 cases containing only reactive mesothelium were immunostained for p53 using monoclonal antibody DO-7. Tumor grades ranged from borderline to high grade and were serous papillary (33), clear cell (3), mucinous (2), endometrioid (2), mixed serous papillary/clear cell (3) and undifferentiated (1). The three authors independently evaluated the staining, including estimation of the percentage and intensity of positive nuclear staining. RESULTS: A separation of positive from negative cases was seen when staining intensity was considered the critical parameter; moderate to strong staining was considered truly positive. Seventy-three percent (8/11) of borderline tumors, 80% (8/10) of low grade tumors and 65% (15/23) of intermediate to high grade tumors showed moderate to strong positivity. Percentage of staining was a less-reliable parameter as 25% of negative cases were positive by this assessment. CONCLUSION: p53 Immunohistochemistry, using monoclonal antibody DO-7 combined with standard morphologic evaluation, may be useful in distinguishing benign reactive mesothelium from borderline or low grade ovarian carcinoma.
- Ovarian neoplasms
- p53 protein