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

Secretory carcinoma of the breast: a distinct variant of invasive ductal carcinoma assessed by comparative genomic hybridization and immunohistochemistry.

Secretory carcinomas (SCA) are distinguished from infiltrating ductal carcinomas (IDC) of the breast by their characteristic histomorphology and more favorable prognosis and by the expression of a chimeric tyrosine kinase that is encoded by the ETV6-NTRK3 fusion gene. On this basis, we evaluated 13 SCAs (12 of them with ETV6-NTRK3 gene fusion) by molecular and immunohistochemical (IHC) methods. DNA was obtained from 8 of 13 microdissected SCAs and was analyzed for genetic alterations (GA) by comparative genomic hybridization (CGH). IHC staining was performed for estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PR), HER2/neu, and Ki-67 (MIB1) in all 13 cases. Molecular and immunohistochemical results in SCAs were compared with previous data regarding immunohistochemical and molecular characteristics of IDCs. An average of 2.0 GAs (range: 0 to 6) were detected, including recurrent gains of chromosome 8q (37.5%) and 1q (25%) and losses of 22q (25%). Four of 13 (31%) SCAs were positive for ER, and 2 were positive for PR. The mean MIB1-labeling index was 11.4% (range: <1 to 34%). Her-2/neu protein overexpression was detected in 2 cases, including 1 with strong (score 3+) and 1 with weak HER2/neu expression (score 2+). Fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis of the latter case showed no evidence of HER-2/neu-gene amplification. Compared with previous findings in IDCs, SCAs are characterized by a relatively low number of GAs, a low proliferative rate, infrequent HER2/neu protein overexpression, decreased steroid hormone receptor expression, and expression of ETV6-NTRK3 fusion gene. These results support the hypothesis that SCAs have immunohistochemical and genetic features that distinguish them from IDCs of the usual type.[1]


  1. Secretory carcinoma of the breast: a distinct variant of invasive ductal carcinoma assessed by comparative genomic hybridization and immunohistochemistry. Diallo, R., Schaefer, K.L., Bankfalvi, A., Decker, T., Ruhnke, M., Wülfing, P., Jackisch, C., Luttges, J., Sorensen, P.H., Singh, M., Poremba, C. Hum. Pathol. (2003) [Pubmed]
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