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Am J Pathol. Jan 1990; 136(1): 219–227.
PMCID: PMC1877466

Vimentin is preferentially expressed in human breast carcinomas with low estrogen receptor and high Ki-67 growth fraction.

Abstract

Vimentin expression, growth fractions (GF), and estrogen receptor (ER) levels were determined for 90 untreated primary breast carcinomas. Coexpression of keratin and vimentin was found in approximately 20% of the tumors regardless of menopausal status. Vimentin was expressed preferentially in tumor cells of high-grade ductal breast carcinomas (15 of 28 histologic grade 3 vs. 0 of 40 grades 1 and 2). Vimentin expression was found preferentially in tumors with high GF (greater than 15% Ki-67 positive by immunoperoxidase staining) and low ER levels (less than 60 fmols/mg protein by a monoclonal enzyme immunoassay). Sixty-eight percent of tumors in this group were vimentin positive and 88% of all vimentin-positive tumors fell into this category. More than 50% of the tumor cells coexpressed vimentin and keratin. Thus, vimentin expression may be helpful in identifying a substantial subset of ER-independent breast carcinomas with poor prognostic indicators.

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Selected References

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