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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

BRCA2 mutations and androgen receptor expression as independent predictors of outcome of male breast cancer patients.

PURPOSE: Germline mutations of the BRCA2 gene are involved in the development of a considerable number of male breast cancer cases. Although phenotypic differences have been observed between sporadic and BRCA-related breast carcinomas, conflicting data exist on the differences in prognosis of women with hereditary and sporadic breast cancer. The purpose of the study was to investigate the prognostic value of BRCA2 status in male breast carcinoma (MBC). EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: We studied 43 male breast cancer patients, including 12 with BRCA2 mutations. Tumor samples were characterized immunohistochemically using antibodies to estrogen receptor, progesterone receptor, and androgen receptor (AR). RESULTS: BRCA2-related tumors presented at the earlier age compared with sporadic tumors (P = 0.005). Patients positive and negative for BRCA2 mutations did not differ with respect to tumor size, lymph node involvement, histological grade, and sex hormone receptor status. Five-year disease-free survival (DFS) and overall survival (OS) were significantly decreased in BRCA2-positive patients (67% versus 28% for BRCA2-negative versus positive patients, respectively, P = 0.017 for DFS; 86% versus 25%, P = 0.006 for OS). Shorter survival was also correlated with expression of AR in tumor tissue (74% versus 33% for patients with tumors staining negatively and positively for AR, P = 0.029 for DFS; 71% versus 57%, P = 0.05 for OS). CONCLUSIONS: The BRCA2 mutations and AR expression in tumor tissue are independent adverse factors for MBC prognosis. BRCA2-related MBC presents at the earlier age compared with non-BRCA2-related cancer, but do not differ with respect to other clinicopathological features.[1]


  1. BRCA2 mutations and androgen receptor expression as independent predictors of outcome of male breast cancer patients. Kwiatkowska, E., Teresiak, M., Filas, V., Karczewska, A., Breborowicz, D., Mackiewicz, A. Clin. Cancer Res. (2003) [Pubmed]
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