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Mol Diagn. 2000 Sep;5(3):199-207.

HER-2/neu assessment in breast cancer by immunohistochemistry and fluorescence in situ hybridization: comparison of results and correlation with survival.

Author information

1
Department of Pathology, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60612, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

HER-2/neu immunohistochemistry (IHC) and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) results guide breast cancer therapy; however, few studies compared the results and no published studies have correlated them with patient outcome.

METHODS AND RESULTS:

We compared results, cost, and turnaround time in 117 archival, invasive breast carcinomas and compared 50-month survival in 65 of these cases using commercial HER-2/neu IHC and FISH assays. Twenty-one of 112 FISH (19%) and 33 of 117 IHC cases (28%) were positive. Concordance was high overall (88%; 98 of 112 cases) and in IHC 3+ cases (88%; 14 of 16 cases) but low in IHC 2+ cases (35%; six of 17 cases). Survival correlated with IHC results in 3+ cases (P =.02) and FISH cases with signal ratio greater than 4.0 (P =.03), but not in IHC 2+ cases (P=.7). Cost and turnaround time were greater for FISH.

CONCLUSION:

IHC is appropriate for initial HER-2/neu assessment; however, patients with tumors scored less than 3+, particularly those interpreted as 2+, would benefit from FISH to more accurately assess HER-2/neu status and avoid inaccurate prognostication and inappropriate treatment.

PMID:
11070154
DOI:
10.1054/modi.2000.16690
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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