The enzyme cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) is expressed in some tumor and stromal tissues, and catalyzes production of prostaglandins with growth stimulatory, antiapoptotic, proangiogenic, and immunosuppressive properties. Pharmacologic inhibition of COX-2 is associated with antitumor activity in various human and canine malignancies. The purpose of this study was to assess COX-2 expression in a series of equine sarcoids, melanomas, and squamous-cell carcinomas (SCC). COX-2 expression was assessed in formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissues from 14 sarcoids, 11 melanomas, and 37 SCC that represent various anatomic sites by using standard immunohistochemical methods. COX-2 was expressed in 2 of 14 sarcoids, 7 of 11 melanomas, and 32 of 37 SCC, 56% of which demonstrated moderate-to-strong immunoreactivity. There were no differences in expression between anatomic sites. In conclusion, most equine SCC and many melanomas appear to express COX-2 and thus could respond to COX-2 inhibitor therapy.
- Cyclooxygenase 2
- Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic
- Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic
- Horse Diseases