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J BUON. 2019 Jan-Feb;24(1):40-47.

Correlations of breast cancer FHIT gene with the incidence and prognosis of breast cancer.

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Department of Thyroid and Breast Surgery, Daqing Long Nan Hospital, Daqing, HeiLongJiang163001, China.



The study aimed to investigate the expression level of fragile histidine triad (FHIT) in breast cancer and analyze its prognostic value.


148 patients admitted and definitely diagnosed with breast cancer in Daqing Long Nan Hospital from January 2011 to January 2013 were collected. Breast cancer, cancer-adjacent and normal tissues of the patients were taken and immunohistochemically stained, and the relationship between FHIT and p16 expressions were analyzed at the gene and protein levels. In addition, clinical data of patients were collected, and analyzed if there was a correlation between FHIT and p16 expressions.


FHIT and p16 were strongly positive in cancer-adjacent tissues and normal tissues but weakly positive in breast cancer tissues, with statistically significant differences in FHIT and p16 expressions (p<0.05). FHIT expression was positively correlated with p16 expression in breast cancer tissues (Spearman's correlation coefficient r=0.352, p=0.026). There were correlations of FHIT with TNM staging of breast cancer, grade of differentiation, lymph node metastasis and formation of portal vein tumor thrombi (p<0.05 in all comparisons). P16 was correlated with tumor size and grade of differentiation (p<0.05 in all comparisons). Expressions of both FHIT and p16 genes and proteins in breast cancer tissues were remarkably lower than those in cancer-adjacent and normal tissues (p<0.05 in all comparisons). Log-rank analysis showed that the 5-year overall survival of patients with FHIT+p16+expressions was significantly longer than that of patients with other phenotypes of expressions (p<0.0001).


The tumor suppressor gene FHIT is lowly expressed in breast cancer tissues and positively associated with the expression of the multi-tumor suppressor gene p16. The 5-year overall prognosis of patients with FHIT+p16+ expressions was better and can be used as one of the prognostic indicators for breast cancer patients.


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