Apoptotic cell death represents an important mechanism for the precise regulation of cell numbers, and a defence mechanism against tumoral cells. bcl-2 and bax genes are known to be involved in the control of apoptotic pathways; in particular, the ratio between bcl-2 and box represents a cell rheostat that is able to predict a cell's response toward life or death to an apoptotic stimulus. In the present study we investigated the role of bcl-2 and bax gene expression in a panel of 37 low-grade tumours of the urinary bladder, and correlated the expression of these genes to the prognosis of patients in a follow-up of more than one year. We found that levels of box expression higher than bcl-2 in bladder tumours well correlates to a better outcome for patients. Early relapses are much more frequently observed in those patients whose tumours express more bcl-2 than bax mRNA. We conclude that the bcl-2/bax expression ratio may be considered as a marker for disease progression in low grade bladder tumours, independently of clinical staging and histological grading.
Bcl-2/bax mRNA expression ratio as prognostic factor in low-grade urinary bladder cancer / Gazzaniga, Paola; Gradilone, Angela; Vercillo, R; Gandini, Orietta; Silvestri, Ida; Napolitano, M; Albonici, L; Vincenzoni, A; Gallucci, M; Frati, Luigi; Agliano', Anna Maria. - In: INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF CANCER. - ISSN 0020-7136. - STAMPA. - 69:2(1996), pp. 100-104. [10.1002/(SICI)1097-0215(19960422)69:2<100::AID-IJC5>3.0.CO;2-4]