IMP-3 expression in keratoacanthomas and squamous cell carcinomas of the skin: an immunohistochemical study Articles uri icon


  • SODDU, S.
  • FELICE, E.D.
  • ATZORI, L.
  • FAA, G.

publication date

  • February 2013

start page

  • 36

end page

  • 40


  • 57


  • 1

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1121-760X

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2038-8306


  • The protein insulin-like growth factor II mRNA binding protein 3 (IMP3) is an important factor for cell migration and adhesion in malignancies. Recent studies have shown a remarkable overexpression of IMP3 in different human malignant neoplasms and also revealed it as an important prognostic marker in some tumor entities. The purpose of this study is to compare IMP3 immunostaining in squamous cellular skin tumor and determine whether IMP3 can aid in the differential diagnosis of these lesions. To our knowledge, IMP3 expression has not been investigated in skin squamous cell proliferations thus far. Immunohistochemical staining for IMP3 was performed on slides organized by samples from 67 patients, 34 with keratoacanthoma and 33 with primary squamous cell carcinoma (16 invasive and 17 in situ). The majority of our KAs (25/34) were negative for IMP-3 staining. The majority of SCCs (19/33) are positive for IMP3 staining. The percentage of IMP3 positive cells increases significantly in group SCC (p=0.0111), and in particular in the SCC in situ group (p=0.0021) with respect to the KA group. IMP3 intensity staining increases significantly in SCCs (p=0.0213), and particularly in SCCs (p=0.008) with respect to KA. Our data show that IMP3 expression is different in keratoacanthomas with respect to squamous cell carcinoma. IMP3 assessment and staining pattern, together with a careful histological study, can be useful in the differential diagnosis between KA e SCC


  • igf-ii mrna-binding protein-3 (imp-3); keratoacanthoma; squamous cell carcinoma.