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Transl Oncol. 2013 Feb;6(1):10-6. Epub 2013 Feb 1.

The Reliability of Endoscopic Biopsies in Assessing HER2 Status in Gastric and Gastroesophageal Junction Cancer: A Study Comparing Biopsies with Surgical Samples.

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  • 1Department of Surgical and Diagnostic Sciences (DISC), Pathology Unit, University of Genoa and IRCCS San Martino-IST University Hospital, Genoa, Italy.

Abstract

AIM:

The aim of this study is to validate the accuracy of HER2 assessment on biopsies by comparing matched biopsy/surgical material from the same patients.

METHODS:

HER2 status was evaluated by immunohistochemistry (IHC) and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) in 103 cases of gastric and gastroesophageal junction cancers in coupled biopsy and surgical material.

RESULT:

Complete concordance between IHC and FISH results on biopsy versus surgical samples was noted in 80% and 95% of cases, respectively. At comprehensive comparison, including IHC and FISH data on biopsy and surgical samples, 89% of biopsies were predictive of HER2 status in surgical samples, whereas 11% showed variable inconsistencies. The majority of these (10 of 12 cases) showed IHC score 0/1+ on biopsy but were all IHC positive and amplified at surgery; in particular, three (3 of 35; 8.5%) IHC score 0 and four (4 of 16; 25%) IHC score 1+ cases were FISH amplified on biopsy material also, whereas the remaining three cases were FISH non-amplified on biopsy. The percentage of cases, which were FISH amplified with IHC score 1+ or 2+ on biopsies, were similar (25% and 33%, respectively) and they also shared a similar grade of amplification. These data suggest that both IHC score 1+ and 2+ on biopsy material represent "equivocal cases" that may merit further investigation.

CONCLUSIONS:

The predictive value of HER2 IHC in biopsies is high. FISH analysis should be considered for IHC score 2+ and 1+ biopsy cases. Approximately 8% of cases will not be accurately predicted by biopsy evaluation.

PMID:
23418612
PMCID:
PMC3573649
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