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Breast. 2013 Apr;22(2):200-202. doi: 10.1016/j.breast.2012.12.004. Epub 2013 Jan 24.

Experts' opinion: Recommendations for retesting breast cancer metastases for HER2 and hormone receptor status.

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Centre Jean Perrin, 58 Rue Montalembert, BP 392, 63011 Clermont-Ferrand cédex, France; Université d'Auvergne, EA 4677, 63000 Clermont-Ferrand, France. Electronic address:
Sírio Libanês Hospital, Rua Dona Adma Jafet, 91 - Bela Vista, Sao Paulo, Brazil. Electronic address:
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, 2075 Bayview Ave., Room E4 32, Toronto, ON, M4N 3M5, Canada. Electronic address:
Center for Diagnostic Pathology, International University of Health and Welfare (IUHW) Mita Hospital, 1-4-3 Mita, Minato-ku, Tokyo 108-8329, Japan. Electronic address:
Pathology Nordhessen, Germaniastraße 7, 34119 Kassel, Germany. Electronic address:
Divisione di Anatomia Patologica, Istituto Europeo di Oncologia ed Università di Milano, Via Ripamonti 435, 20141 Milan, Italy. Electronic address:


The human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) and hormone receptor status of recurrent breast cancer may change between the tumor and metastases from negative to positive and vice versa, potentially affecting the treatment regimen. Retesting of metastases may therefore be crucial to allow appropriate selection of patients for whom targeted therapy is indicated; however, retesting is not routinely performed. This article recommends that metastases be retested for HER2 and hormone receptor status and provides practical guidance on when and how to retest, as agreed by a panel of expert pathologists with extensive experience of HER2 and hormone receptor testing.

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