Author(s): Mokbel KM, Parris CN, Ghilchik M, Amerasinghe CN, Newbold RF
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Telomerase is a ribonucleoprotein enzyme that plays an important role in cell immortalization and carcinogenesis. Lymphovascular invasion (LVI) is a fundamental step in the process of breast cancer metastasis and is recognized as an important prognostic factor in patients with breast cancer. METHODS: Using a PCR-based assay, telomerase activity was determined in 34 prospectively collected infiltrating breast carcinomas. Adjacent sections of the specimens were examined histologically by two experienced breast pathologists using light microscopy and haematoxylin & eosin staining. RESULTS: Telomerase activity was detected in 24 (71\%) of 34 breast tumours. Two (20\%) of 10 telomerase-negative tumours had LVI compared with 14 (58.3\%) of 24 telomerase-positive tumours. This association was statistically significant (P<0.05). Telomerase activity was also significantly associated with nodal metastases but not with tumour grade, tumour size or menopausal status. CONCLUSIONS: Telomerase reactivation is significantly associated with LVI in breast cancer and may reflect the metastatic potential of the disease.
This article was published in Eur J Surg Oncol
and referenced in Journal of Cancer Science & Therapy