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To determine prevalence of p53 tumor suppressor protein overexpression in spontaneously arising tumors of dogs, using the CM-1 polyclonal antibody and immunohistochemical methods.

Design and Sample Population

Retrospective analysis was performed on archived, paraffin-embedded tumor tissue from dogs. A total of 226 tumors were evaluated, including tumors of epithelial, mesenchymal, and round cell origins.


Overexpression of p53 was detected by indirect immunohistochemical methods, using the CM-1 rabbit anti-human p53 polyclonal primary antibody. Protein overexpression was determined by use of a grading system based on percentage of stained tumor nuclei.


Nuclear overexpression of p53 was detected in most squamous cell carcinomas, nasal ade-nocarcinomas, and perianal gland adenocarcinomas. Hemangiopericytomas, transitional cell carcinomas, mammary adenocarcinomas, apocrine gland adenocarcinomas, intestinal adenocarcinomas, mast cell tumors, and cutaneous histiocytomas had low numbers of nuclei overexpressing p53. Remaining tumor types had intermediate p53 nuclear overexpression. Cytoplasmic staining was observed in some carcinomas, particularly intestinal adenocarcinomas.


Overexpression of p53 is common in spontaneously arising neoplasms of dogs.

Clinical Relevance

Prospective determination of p53 status in some tumor types may be as clinically useful in determining prognosis and predicting survival times for dogs with cancer as it is for human beings with cancer. (Am J Vet Res 1997;58:857–863)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research