Send to

Choose Destination
J Surg Oncol. 1980;13(1):9-20.

Histoculture of human breast cancers.


Breast cancers from 53 patients were explanted in culture, and 39 with two-year or more follow-up and documentable tissue forms of cancer in culture (histoculture) are the subject of this report. Clinicopathologic findings have been correlated with dynamic aspects of the cancers in short-term histocultures, including cell cohesiveness, yield and survival time of the cancer cells in culture, emigration of macrophages from the explants, and the occurrence of special interactions of lymphocytes with cancer cells. The outstanding finding was the association of special lymphocyte-cancer cell interactions with a more favorable prognosis; six of seven patients (86%) with infiltrating ductal cancer showing lymphocyte congregation, emperiopolesis, or other special activity were tumor-free survivors. Additional findings were: 1) patients having four or fewer lymph nodes positive for cancer had a survival rate of 50%, but this fell to 20% when emigrating macrophages were not present in the cancer cultures; 2) eight of the 12 patients (67%) having discoid histoculture survival time of less than one week were tumor-free, as opposed to three of eight patients (27%) where tumor survival in vitro was greater than one week. The reverse was true for nondiscoid, poorly cohesive colonies of cancer; 3) the combination of tumor-negative lymph nodes and low in vitro cancer yield was associated with the best patient survival rate, 64%. However, the combination of negative nodes and high in vitro yield was linked to the worst patient survival (20%). Although the overall study does not permit definitive conclusions, there is an undeniable potential for the use of histocultures in the evaluation of human cancers. Expanded studies are warranted, including larger numbers of tumors and cultures, and longer patient follow-up periods.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center