Objectives: This study assessed the prognosis of leiomyomata in Saudi patients through determining the area per cent of Bcl-2 immunohistochemical expression and the microvessel count as expressed by CD34, aiming to exploit an antibody-based therapy rather than surgical management. Recent studies have focussed on the function of proto-oncogene and tumour suppressor gene products in directing cell fate. In particular, an explosion of research interest has centred on the role of Bcl-2 in controlling the survival and death of cells, and CD34 as an indicator of the new vascularization of the lesion.
Methods: Thirty fibroid tissue specimens were collected from patients aged 30 to 50 years who underwent hysterectomy or myomectomy for the resection of symptomatic single or multiple operable uterine fibroids, and adjacent normal myometrial tissue was obtained (20) at Medina Maternity Child Hospital. Tissue sections (5 µm) were cut and stained with haematoxylin and eosin for general histological examination. Other sections were immunostained with CD34 and Bcl-2 antibodies. Area per cent of Bcl-2 expression and microvessel count were measured by a stereological procedure with image analyser.
Results: The area per cent of Bcl-2 expression showed significantly higher expression of Bcl-2 in leiomyoma (1.37 ± 0.016) as compared with normal myometrium (0.31 ± 0.007) [p = 0.045]. The mean number of microvessels, as expressed by CD34, was significantly higher in leiomyoma (17.9 ± 0.49) as compared with normal myometrium (7.7 ± 0.40) [p = 0.040].
Conclusion: The study demonstrated that leiomyomata of Saudi patients expressed upgrading of Bcl-2 and proved the increased vascularity of this tumour.