Vascular mimicry may be a prognostic factor for recurrence-free survival (RFS) in patients with clear-cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC) after radical nephrectomy, according to a Chinese population study published in The Journal of Urology.1

Researchers led by Lin Zhou, PhD, of Fudan University in Shanghai conducted a retrospective cohort study of 387 patients with ccRCC who had undergone radical nephrectomy at the university between 2008 and 2009. They recorded pathologic features, baseline patient characteristics, and follow-up data for all patients.

Vascular mimicry in ccRCC tissue was identified through CD31-PAS double staining, and univariate and multivariable Cox regression models were used to analyze the impact of prognostic factors on RFS.

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They found that positive vascular mimicry staining occurred in 6.5% of all observed ccRCC cases, and it was associated with an increased risk of recurrence. In addition, vascular mimicry was identified as an independent prognostic factor.

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“Further external validation and functional analysis should be pursued to assess its potential prognostic and therapeutic values for ccRCC patients,” the authors concluded.


  1. Zhou L, Chang Y, Xu L, et al. The presence of vascular mimicry predicts high recurrence risk of clear-cell renal cell carcinoma after radical nephrectomy [published online ahead of print March 10, 2016]. J Urol. doi: 10.1016/j.juro.2016.02.2971.