The Value of Determination of Nuclear Oestrogen Receptors in Breast Cancer Biopsies
The oestrogen receptor status of the soluble fraction of a tumour biopsy is now accepted as a valuable tool in the management of advanced breast cancer . Soluble receptor status of primary disease may also be of value as a prognostic index [3, 20], although this value might be limited to patients with intermediate nodal involvement . However, the presence of soluble receptors alone is not an absolute index of hormonal dependence . Hormone-receptor complex might fail to undergo translocation/activation  or to bind to the correct acceptor sites on the DNA . Loss of hormonal dependence through a breakdown at the post-transcriptional level is also a possibility. For these reasons several parameters of oestrogen response have been studied in breast tumour biopsies. Measurement of the presence of progesterone receptor (a product of oestrogen action) has proved productive . The suggestion that a useful index of hormonal dependence might simply be the presence of nuclear-bound oestrogen receptor  has been followed up by several groups [2, 15, 29, 38].
KeywordsSucrose Glycerol Estrogen EDTA Fluoride
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