Vascular permeability factor (VPF)/vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is unique in its ability to promote vascular permeability and endothelial cell growth, and its role in tumor development has received considerable attention. In this report, we describe the elevation of VPF/VEGF transcript expression in human hepatocellular carcinoma. Surgical samples of 23 patients with hepatocellular carcinoma were studied using reverse transcription-PCR analysis. The oligonucleotide primers were designed to amplify all four known splicing variants that could be expressed in the samples studied. Sixteen cases showed VPF/VEGF transcript expression in the tumor (16/23, 69.6%), whereas only 9 of the 23 patients showed it in the corresponding nontumoral part. There was no difference between the pattern of expression of VPF/VEGF isoforms in tumoral and nontumoral tissues. VPF/VEGF mRNA expression in the liver tumors was associated with fibrous capsule formation and septal formation (P < 0.05 respectively, Fisher's exact P test). In situ hybridization confirmed the presence of VPF/VEGF mRNA expression in tumor cells and less intensely in hepatocytes of nontumoral liver. We also found that VPF/VEGF expression in the tumor cell was increased in the area adjacent to necrotic regions (presumably hypoxic regions). As a regulator of vascular permeability and endothelial cell growth factor, VPF/VEGF may play an important role in the development of hepatocellular carcinoma.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||6|
|State||Published - Jul 1 1996|