Background and aims: Macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) was reported to inactivate p53 and play an essential role in the growth and angiogenesis of tumors that arise at sites of chronic inflammation. This study aimed to investigate the expression of MIF in a series of 90 gastric carcinomas (GCs) in relation to clinicopathological parameters, p53 expression and angiogenesis. Methods: MIF and p53 expression were assessed by immunohistochemistry as positive and negative groups. Tumor vascularity was evaluated by counting microvessel density on anti-CD34 stained sections. Expression status of MIF was correlated with determined clinicopathological data, p53 immunoreactivity and microvessel counts. Results: Strong immunostainings of MIF were observed in the cytoplasm of cancerous cells in 40% (36/90) of cases but not in normal or metaplastic epithelia. There was no statistical significant correlation between MIF expression and age, gender, H. pylori, tumor location, histological subtypes, lymph node metastasis or p53 expression. Early GC less frequently overexpressed MIF as compared to advanced GCs (4/20 vs. 32/70,p=0.04). A remarkably increased microvessel count was noted in GCs with MIF expression than those without MIF expression (55.1±30.1 vs. 31.3±28.8 p=0.0001) Conclusions: Expression of MIF may contribute to the progression and enhanced angiogenesis in a substantial portion of GCs.

[Proc Amer Assoc Cancer Res, Volume 45, 2004]