The expression of aldehyde dehydrogenase 1 (ALDH1) in ovarian carcinomas and its clinicopathological associations: A retrospective study

Ruixia Huang, Xiaoran Li, Ruth Holm, Claes G. Trope, Jahn M. Nesland, Zhenhe Suo

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    22 Scopus citations


    Background: Aldehyde dehydrogenase 1 (ALDH1) is widely used as a specific cancer stem cell marker in a variety of cancers, and may become a promising target for cancer therapy. However, the role of its expression in tumor cells and the microenvironment in different cancers is still controversial. Methods: To clarify the clinicopathological effect of ALDH1 expression in ovarian carcinoma, a series of 248 cases of paraffin-embedded formalin fixed ovarian carcinoma tissues with long term follow-up information were studied by immunohistochemistry. Results: The immunostaining of ALDH1was variably detected in both tumor cells and the stromal cells, although the staining in tumor cells was not as strong as that in stromal cells. Statistical analyses showed that high ALDH1 expression in tumor cells was significantly associated with histological subtypes, early FIGO stage, well differentiation grade and better survival probability (p < 0.05). The expression of ALDH1 in the stromal cells had no clinicopathological associations in the present study (p > 0.05). Conclusioms: High expression of cancer stem cell marker ALDH1 in ovarian carcinoma cells may thus portend a favorable prognosis, but its expression in tumor microenvironment may have no role in tumor behavior of ovarian carcinomas. More studies are warranted to find out the mechanisms for this.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Article number502
    JournalBMC cancer
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - Jul 7 2015



    • ALDH1
    • Cancer stem cells
    • Immunohistochemistry
    • Ovarian carcinoma
    • Stromal cells
    • Tumor microenvironment

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Genetics
    • Oncology
    • Cancer Research

    Cite this