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Cancer J. 2005 Sep-Oct;11(5):404-11.

Immunohistochemical biomarkers in patients with early-onset breast carcinoma by tissue microarray.

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Department of Therapeutic Radiology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut, USA.


Young women with breast cancer have a poor prognosis, and the role of biologic markers in young women is not well defined. We investigated the association of estrogen receptor, progesterone receptor, Bcl-2, HER-2/neu, p53, and Ki-67 with clinicopathologic features and outcome in young women with breast cancer.


A cohort of 103 patients with early-onset breast cancer treated with conservative surgery and radiotherapy were entered in this study. Age range was 25-45 years, and median follow-up was 8.7 years. Each of the paraffin-embedded specimens was immunologically stained for six biomarkers expression by a recently developed tissue microarray method.


The 10-year overall breast relapse-free and distant relapse-free survival rates were 82.7%, 84.6.4%, and 66.7%, respectively, with 14 local relapses and 26 distant metastases among the 103 patients evaluated. Positive expression of estrogen receptor, progesterone receptor, bcl-2, HER-2/neu, p53, and Ki-67 were 42.7%, 48.5%, 35.6%, 28.0%, 36.9%, and 39.7%, respectively. Tumor stage and nodal status were significantly associated with overall survival and distant metastasis-free rate in univariate and multivariate analysis. Progesterone receptor negativity and Ki-67 positivity were associated with distant metastasis. There was no statistically significant correlation between the six biomarkers and local relapse.


Progesterone receptor, Ki-67, tumor stage, and nodal status were prognostic factors for distant failure in early-stage breast cancer in young patients. Further studies are needed to find other biologic markers associated with local failure in this group of patients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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