The International Journal of Romanian Society of Endocrinology / Registered in 1938

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July - September 2020, Volume 16, Issue 3
General Endocrinology

Basaran R, Gundogan D, Senol M, Bozdogan C, Gezen F, Sav A

The Expression of Stem Cell Markers (CD133, NESTIN, OCT4, SOX2) in Invasive Pituitary Adenomas

Acta Endo (Buc) 2020, 16 (3): 303-310
doi: 10.4183/aeb.2020.303

Introduction. The pituitary gland serves as the center of the endocrine system. Stem cells are typically found in a specialized microenvironment of the tissue, called the niche, which regulates their maintenance, self-renewal, fate determination, and reaction to external influences. The aim of this study is to elucidate the role of stem cells in the initiation, invasion, and progression of pituitary adenomas. Materials and methods. All specimens were collected between January 2007 and April 2015. Radiological classification (invasiveness) for all cases was performed according to the Wilson-Hardy classification system. Immunohistochemical staining was performed to all specimens for CD133, Oct4, Sox2 and nestin. Results. The study included 48 patients. Of 48 patients, 17 (35.4%) were male and 31 (64.6%) were female. Mean age is 47.10±14.14 (17–86 yrs.). According to the Wilson-Hardy classification system, 27 (56.3%) were noninvasive adenomas. There was no statistical significance between the expression of pituitary stem cell markers (CD133, OCT4, SOX2, nestin) and invasiveness. Conclusion. All stem cell markers are stained extensively in pituitary adenomas, except for SOX2 which was stained weakly. However, there is no effect of stem cells on invasiveness of pituitary adenomas because we cannot find a difference of the staining level between invasive and non-invasive adenomas. Nestin was stained extensively in functional adenomas, especially for GH, PRL, and gonadotropin secreting adenomas. SOX2 was stained extensively for ACTH-secreting adenomas.

Keywords: pituitary adenoma, stem cell, CD133, OCT4, SOX2, Nestin, invasive.

Correspondence: Recep Basaran MD, University of Medical Sciences, Sancaktepe Education and Research Hospital, Dept. of Neurosurgery, Istanbul, Sancaktepe, 34785, Turkey, E-mail: