Prognostic relevance of tn expression in Breast Cancer
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Abnormal glycosylation patterns have been recognized as a feature of carcinoma-associated mucins. The expression of the Tn antigen in breast cancer tissue was investigated to assess its prognostic relevance.
Formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded materials from 219 patients with breast cancer were used. Immunohistochemical staining of the Tn antigen was retrospectively investigated and a lesion staining 10% or more was considered positive.
Tn antigen expression was present in 99 (45%) of 219 lesions. There were no correlations between Tn antigen expression and mean patient age, nodal status, estrogen receptor status, or menopausal status, but there was a slightly significant association between Tn and tumor size. Patients negative for the Tn antigen had a significantly better survival rate than those who were positive. Multivariate analysis also indicated that Tn expression correlated significantly with overall survival in addition to nodal status and tumor size.
Tn expression was a significant prognostic factor in breast cancer, but the significance was lost on multivariate analysis. The biological implication of Tn expression in breast cancer needs further investigation.
Key wordsBreast cancer Tn antigen Mucin Survival
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