Large bowel carcinogenesis involves accumulation of genetic alterations leading to transformation of normal mucosa into dysplasia and, lastly, adenocarcinoma. It is pertinent to elucidate the molecular changes occurring in the pre-neoplastic lesions to facilitate early diagnosis and treatment. Heat shock proteins (Hsps), many of which are molecular chaperones, are implicated in carcinogenesis, and their variations with tumor progression encourage their study as biomarkers. There are many reports on Hsps and cancer but none to our knowledge on their systematic quantification in pre-neoplastic lesions of the large bowel. We performed immunohistochemical determinations of Hsp10, Hsp60, Hsp70, and Hsp90 in biopsies of large bowel tubular adenomas with moderate grade of dysplasia and compared to normal mucosa and adenocarcinoma with a moderate grade of differentiation (G2). A significant elevation of Hsp10 and Hsp60 only, i.e., in the absence of elevation of Hsp70 or Hsp90, in both epithelium and lamina propria was found in tubular adenoma by comparison with normal mucosa. In contrast, adenocarcinoma was characterized by the highest levels of Hsp10 and Hsp60 in epithelium and lamina propria, accompanied by the highest levels of Hsp70 only in epithelium and of Hsp90 only in lamina propria, by comparison with normal and tubular adenoma counterparts. Hsp10 and Hsp60 are promising biomarkers for early diagnosis of tubular adenoma and for its differentiation from more advanced malignant lesions. Hsp10 and Hsp60 may be implicated in carcinogenesis from its very early steps and, thus, are potentially convenient targets for therapy.