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Future Oncol. 2013 Oct;9(10):1477-87. doi: 10.2217/fon.13.103.

TOP2A protein by quantitative immunofluorescence as a predictor of response to epirubicin in the neoadjuvant treatment of breast cancer.

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  • 1'Sandro Pitigliani' Medical Oncology Unit, Hospital of Prato, Istituto Toscano Tumori, Piazza Ospedale 2, 59100, Prato, Italy.



Anthracyclines are commonly used in breast cancer, although they lack validated predictive biomarkers. We explored the interaction between TOP2A protein by quantitative immunofluorescence (QIF) and anthracycline sensitivity.


Patients with estrogen receptor-negative breast cancer received neoadjuvant epirubicin. Pretreatment biopsies were analyzed using AQUA(®). Total, cytoplasmic (C) and nuclear (N) TOP2A protein concentrations were expressed as QIF scores and compared with pathologic complete response (pCR), TOP2A by immunohistochemistry, TOP2A mRNA, TOP2A and HER2 gene status, and Ki-67 level.


In total, 76 cases were assessable. C, N, and total scores did not correlate with pCR, or other markers. The N:C ratio differed significantly by HER2 status. No pCRs occurred in patients in the lowest N:C quartile.


Although no relevant correlation between TOP2A QIF scores and pCR was found, N:C ratio may have a negative predictive role, and may merit further exploration in a multifactorial predictive model that includes tumor and host factors.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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