Cyclooxygenase-2 expression in equine tumors

D H Thamm, E J Ehrhart, J B Charles, Y A Elce

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


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.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)825-8
Number of pages4
JournalVeterinary Pathology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2008


  • Animals
  • Cyclooxygenase 2
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic
  • Horse Diseases
  • Horses
  • Neoplasms


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