Immunohistochemical Evaluation of GLUT-3 and GLUT-4 in Oral Epithelial Dysplasia and Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Document Type : Research Articles


1 Department of Dental Clinic, Division of Oral Pathology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Dentistry and Nursing, Federal University of Ceara, Fortaleza, Brazil.

2 Department of Oral Pathology, Fortaleza University, Fortaleza, Brazil.

3 Department of Pharmacology, School of Dentistry, Federal University of Ceara, Campus Sobral, Sobral, Brazil.

4 Departament of Morphology, School of Medicine, Federal University of Ceara, Brazil.


Objectives: To evaluate immunohistochemically the expression of GLUT-3 and GLUT-4 in oral epithelial dysplasia
(OED) and the oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) and assess possible involvement in the malignant transformation of
oral lesions. Methods: Tissue samples of 15 cases of OSCC and 15 of OED were subjected to immunohistochemistry
with anti-GLUT-3 and anti-GLUT-4 antibodies. Five fields of each case were analyzed, to provide percentages of
positive cells at 400X magnification. Result: GLUT-3 and GLUT-4 were positive in 100% of the analyzed samples,
the percentage immunolabeling for GLUT-3 ranging from 19% to 73% in the OED group and 10% to 89% in the OSCC
group. Positive immunolabeling for GLUT-4 ranged from 15.2% to 79.9% in the OSCC group and 27.1% to 92.6% in
the OED group. Statistical analysis with the Mann-Whitney test revealed that there was a higher expression of GLUT-4 in
the OED group than in the OSCC group (p=0.04) without any significant difference in the GLUT-3 expression (p=0.852).
Conclusion: GLUT-4 expression may indicate some role in oncogenic mechanisms which can determine a malignant
phenotype. Thus, it is suggested that further studies on the role of GLUT-3 in oral carcinogenesis be conducted.


Main Subjects