RANK, RANKL, and OPG in recurrent solid/multicystic ameloblastoma: Their distribution patterns and biologic significance

Chong Huat Siar, Hidetsugu Tsujigiwa, Ismadi Ishak, Nurmawarnis Mat Hussin, Hitoshi Nagatsuka, Kok Han Ng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives To determine the distribution patterns of bone resorption regulators, receptor activator of nuclear factor κ-B (RANK), RANK ligand (RANKL), and osteoprotegerin (OPG) in recurrent ameloblastoma (RAs) and to clarify their impact on the biologic behavior of these neoplasms.

Materials and Methods Fifteen paraffin-embedded RA cases were subjected to immunohistochemistry for expression of RANK, RANKL, and OPG.

Results The RANK-RANKL-OPG triad was heterogeneously detected in RA samples. RANK, essential for osteoclast differentiation, was strongly expressed in tumoral epithelium. Conversely, RANKL, an osteoclast activator, was markedly underexpressed, and protein localization was predominantly stromal. OPG, an osteoclastogenesis inhibitory factor, was detected in neoplastic epithelium more than in stroma, suggesting functional inactivation of RANKL. Most RA (n = 12/15; 80%) exhibited a bimolecular spatial expression pattern, the most common being RANK-positive/OPG-positive (n = 8/15; 53.3%). All three proteins showed no significant correlation with the clinical/histopathologic parameters in RA patients (P >.05).

Conclusions The RANK+/RANKLlow/-/OPG+ phenotype observed in RA suggests an altered local bone metabolism characterized by low bone resorptive activity in these recurrent tumors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)83-91
Number of pages9
JournalOral Surgery, Oral Medicine, Oral Pathology and Oral Radiology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Oral Surgery
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Dentistry (miscellaneous)
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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