Vimentin—a new prognostic parameter in breast carcinoma?

Authors

  • Dr. Wendy A. Raymond,

    Corresponding author
    1. Division of Tissue Pathology, Institute of Medical and Veterinary Science, Adelaide, South Australia, 5000
    • Division of Tissue Pathology, Institute of Medical and Veterinary Science, Box 14, Rundle Mall PO, Adelaide, South Australia 5000
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  • Anthony S.-Y. Leong

    1. Division of Tissue Pathology, Institute of Medical and Veterinary Science, Adelaide, South Australia, 5000
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  • Presented in part at the Annual Scientific Meeting of the Royal College of Pathologisls of Australasia, Hobart, October 1988.

Abstract

This report describes a positive relationship between vimentin expression in infiltrating ductal breast carcinoma, and high tumour growth fraction. Vimentin expression is potentially a predictor of aggressive behaviour, and such carcinomas may benefit from early adjuvant therapy.

Eighty-four malignant breast neoplasms were stained with monoclonal anti-vimentin and anti-cytokeratin antibodies. The tumour growth fractions were determined by immunostaming cryostat sections with the Ki-67 antibody. Seven (9.2 per cent) of 76 infiltrating ductal carcinomas co-expressed cytokeratin and vimentin intermediate filaments in more than 50 per cent of neoplastic cells. In each case, the corresponding Ki-67 count was ≥40 percent, significantly higher than the mean growth fraction for all tumours examined (P<0.0001). Vimentin immunoreactivity was also positively related to the histological grade of the ductal carcinomas (P<0.002) and inversely related to tumour ER count (P<0.0002) and patient age (P<0.01). No relationship was observed between vimentin positivity and either the presence of axillary nodal metastases or primary tumour size.

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