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Gan To Kagaku Ryoho. 1996 Mar;23 Suppl 1:50-5.

[Detection of breast cancer micrometastases in lymph nodes by amplification of keratin 19 mRNA with reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction].

[Article in Japanese]

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Dept. of Surgery, Center for Adult Diseases, Osaka, Japan.


Keratin 19 mRNA reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (K 19 RT-PCR) was compared with histological examination in the detection of breast cancer micrometastases in axillary lymph nodes. Sixty-three axillary lymph nodes, which were obtained from 23 breast cancer patients, were bisected. One half was studied by conventional histological analysis of hematoxylin and eosin sections. Total RNA was extracted from the other half and subjected to K 19 RT-PCR. In all the ten lymph nodes, which were histologically metastasis-positive, K 19 mRNA was detected by RT-PCR. Of the 53 histologically negative lymph nodes, five (9%) lymph nodes were found to express K 19 mRNA, indicating the presence of micrometastases which could be detected by RT-PCR but not by a histological examination. These results demonstrate the usefulness of K 19 RT-PCR in the detection of breast cancer micrometastases in lymph nodes.

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