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Anticancer Res. 2000 Nov-Dec;20(6D):5069-72.

Lack of correlation between P53 expression, BCL-2 expression, apoptosis and ex vivo chemosensitivity in advanced human breast cancer.

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Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, University of Cologne, Kerpener Strasse 34, D-50931 Cologne, Germany.


The relationship between apoptosis and chemosensitivity remains complex. We tested the chemosensitivity of 45 patients with advanced breast cancer (BC) ex vivo against anthracyclines (A: doxorubicin, epirubicin), taxanes (T: paclitaxel, docetaxel), cisplatin (DDP) and CMF and any correlation with the expression of p53, Bcl-2 and apoptosis. Viable cells were processed for ex vivo ATP Tumor Chemosensitivity Assay (ATP-TCA). Immunohistochemistry was performed in corresponding tumor samples. Apoptosis prior to chemotherapy was assayed using a TUNEL Test. Of 45 BC tested, 18 (40%) were p53+ and 37 (82%) showed high Bcl-2 expression. Apoptosis was detected in 29 (64.4%) specimens. The Ex vivo Response Rate (EVRR) for T was 75.6% in all cases. This was the highest rate among the 4 drugs tested followed by CMF (66.7%). For A and DDP the positive rates were lower (27.6% and 10.6%, respectively). A significant correlation (r = 0.589, p < or = 0.01) was found between tumors which were sensitive to A and DDP. There was no association between chemosensitivity and apoptosis. Moreover tests for p53 and Bcl-2 did not show a correlation to ex vivo chemosensitivity. Pretreatment apoptotic parameters are unlikely to predict the individual response of breast cancer to antineoplastic agents.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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