Statement of the Problem: Oral epithelial dysplasia (OED) is a common potentially malignant lesion of oral cavity that should be managed to prevent likely malignant transformation.
Purpose: Here, we present a combination of binary grading system with complementary immunohistochemical (IHC) staining for Ki67 biomarker to provide a reproducible OED grading system.
Materials and Method: In this cross-sectional study, seventy out of one hundred OED specimens, which were accompanied by IHC stained microscopic slides for Ki67 antigen were evaluated by four independent oral pathologists. Both three-tier and binary grading systems based on WHO microscopic criteria were employed , blindly in a four-step method with at least two-week interval between each observation. Intra- and inter-observational reliability was assessed using Kappa statistical analysis.
Results: OED diagnosis based on binary system showed significant intra-observer reliability comparing to three-tier system without biomarker. Moreover, OED diagnosis based on binary system using Ki67 biomarker showed significant inter-observer reliability comparing to diagnosis in three tier system and based on binary system without Ki67 biomarker showed significant inter-observer reliability comparing to diagnosis based on three-tier system without Ki67.
Conclusion: Here, we found that application of IHC staining for Ki67 biomarker in binary system might provide a more reliable grading method for oral pathologist form different educational background.