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July 1994

Acinic Cell Carcinoma of Salivary Glands: Prognostic Relevance of DNA Flow Cytometry and Nucleolar Organizer Regions

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery (Drs Timon and Gullane) and Pathology and Otolaryngology (Dr Dardick), The Toronto (Ontario) Hospital; the Departments of Biostatistics (Mr Panzarella) and Pathology (Dr Patterson), Princess Margaret Hospital, Toronto; the Canadian Reference Centre for Cancer Pathology, Ottawa, Ontario (Dr Thomas); and the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Washington, DC (Dr Ellis).

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1994;120(7):727-733. doi:10.1001/archotol.1994.01880310033007

Objective:  To test the prognostic ability of flow cytometry and counts of silver-enhanced intranuclear nucleolar organizing regions (AgNORs) in acinic cell carcinoma.

Design:  Using statistical methods to establish if analysis of DNA content, percentage DNA synthetic (S)-phase, and the AgNOR counts on 45 cases of acinic cell carcinoma with clinical follow-up ranging from 10 to 379 months are predictors of time to recurrence or time to death due to acinic cell carcinomas.

Main Outcome Measures:  Whether tumors with low AgNOR counts and diploid DNA are favorable acinic cell carcinomas and the converse, aneuploid DNA and elevated AgNOR count, predict unfavorable neoplasms.

Results:  Tumors with a diploid DNA content had as unfavorable a clinical course as aneuploid acinic cell carcinomas. Similarly, S-phase and AgNOR count results showed considerable overlap when separated into carcinomas with or without local recurrence, metastasis, or death due to tumor. Statistical evaluation also failed to provide predictors of clinical course based on ploidy, percentage S-phase, or AgNOR counts.

Conclusion:  The results, although negative, are important in showing that data on DNA content, cell cycle, and nuclear limits useful in other neoplasms are of limited practical application in establishing predictors of time to recurrence or time to death in acinic cell carcinomas. Solving the enigmas, for clinicians and pathologists, associated with acinic cell carcinomas will require further information about the biology of this neoplasm.(Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1994;120:727-733)

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