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J Clin Oncol. 2008 May 10;26(14):2373-8. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2007.14.4287. Epub 2008 Apr 14.

Breast cancer subtype approximated by estrogen receptor, progesterone receptor, and HER-2 is associated with local and distant recurrence after breast-conserving therapy.

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Department of Radiation Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA.

Erratum in

  • J Clin Oncol. 2008 Jun;26(18):3110.



To determine whether breast cancer subtype is associated with outcome after breast-conserving therapy (BCT) consisting of lumpectomy and radiation therapy.


We studied 793 consecutive patients with invasive breast cancer who received BCT from July 1998 to December 2001. Among them, 97% had pathologically negative margins of resection, and 90% received adjuvant systemic therapy. No patient received adjuvant trastuzumab. Receptor status was used to approximate subtype: estrogen receptor (ER) or progesterone receptor (PR) positive and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 negative = luminal A; ER+ or PR+ and HER-2+ = luminal B; ER-and PR -and HER-2+ = HER-2; and ER-and PR -and HER-2-= basal. Competing risks methodology was used to analyze time to local recurrence and distant metastases.


Median follow-up was 70 months. The overall 5-year cumulative incidence of local recurrence was 1.8% (95% CI, 1.0 to 3.1); 0.8% (0.3, 2.2) for luminal A, 1.5% (0.2, 10) for luminal B, 8.4% (2.2, 30) for HER-2, and 7.1% (3.0, 16) for basal. On multivariable analysis (MVA) with luminal A as baseline, HER-2 (adjusted hazard ratio [AHR] = 9.2; 95% CI, 1.6 to 51; P = .012) and basal (AHR = 7.1; 95% CI, 1.6 to 31; P = .009) subtypes were associated with increased local recurrence. On MVA, luminal B (AHR = 2.9; 95% CI, 1.3 to 6.5; P = .007) and basal (AHR = 2.3; 95% CI, 1.1 to 5.2; P = .035) were associated with increased distant metastases.


Overall, the 5-year local recurrence rate after BCT was low, but varied by subtype as approximated using ER, PR, and HER-2 status. Local recurrence was particularly low for the luminal A subtype, but was less than 10% at 5 years for all subtypes. Although further follow-up is needed, these results may be useful in counseling patients about their anticipated outcome after BCT.

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