• Open Access

Predicting invasive phenotype with CDH1, CDH13, CD44, and TIMP3 gene expression in primary breast cancer


To whom correspondence should be addressed.
E-mail: aydancelebiler@gmail.com


We aimed to determine changes in the expression of the genes CDH1, CDH13, CD44, and TIMP3 to look for any relationship between them, HER2 and ESR1 expression at the RNA level, and the histopathological properties of tumors. We also analyzed the expression properties of double-negative (estrogen receptor [ER] and human epidermal growth factor receptor [HER2] both negative) breast tumors. Expression status was studied in fresh tissue at the mRNA level with quantitative PCR using hydrolysis probes. Sixty-two cancer patients and four normal controls were included in the study. When the tumor group was analyzed as a whole, the correlations of ESR1 with CDH1, CDH13, and TIMP3 were < 0.05, < 0.005, and < 0.005, respectively. In ER-positive tumors, CDH1 and CDH13 were correlated directly (< 0.005) when HER2 was correlated with CDH1, CDH13, and TIMP3 indirectly (< 0.005, < 0.005, and < 0.05, respectively). CDH1 and CD44 had a strong indirect correlation (< 0.005) in ER-negative tumors. There were significant differences in the expression levels of the CDH13, TIMP3, and CD44 genes (< 0.005, < 0.005, and < 0.05, respectively) between the ER-positive and -negative groups. All four genes were found to be correlated with invasive properties in both ER-positive and -negative tumors. In double-negative tumor samples, only CD44 had a significant and strong correlation with stage, lymph node involvement, and metastasis (< 0.05, < 0.005, and < 0.05, respectively). As a conclusion, a decrease in CDH1, CDH13, and TIMP3 expression levels with an increase in CD44 can be used as an indicator for invasion in both ER-positive and -negative breast tumors. In double-negative tumor tissues, CD44 can be considered a marker for aggressive properties. (Cancer Sci 2009; 100: 2341–2345)