Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Immature and misleading

12.04.2012
Are modern molecular classification methods for breast carcinomas reasonable?

Austrian scientists challenge the clinical relevance of the term “basal-like” breast cancer subtype. Not all breast cancers are the same. Different types can mean different prognoses for the patient, and a different kind of treatment may be adequate. But how to classify tumors? Are molecular classification methods reliable?

Mohammad Ali Lavasani and Farid Moinfar from the Unit of Breast and Gynecologic Pathology at the Medical University of Graz, Austria give a critical review of the literature with focus on “basal-like” carcinoma.

The conventional clinicopathological parameters such as histologic grade, nuclear grade, tumor size, involvement of axillary lymph nodes, etc., all have been successfully correlated to prognosis of patients with breast carcinoma. Yet, the current prognostic and/or predictive factors have significant limitations in distinguishing breast cancer patients who could benefit from (neo)adjuvant chemotherapy from those who do not need any additional treatment.

Indeed, it has been suggested that almost 70% of patients with breast cancer receiving chemotherapy or antihormonal therapy would have survived without such treatments, as Lavasani and Moinfar state in their review.

With the introduction of complementary DNA (cDNA) and oligonucleotide microarrays in the 1990s, the increasing application of these high-throughput biotechnologies, and significant improvement in bioinformatic analyses a new era began: Genome-wide approaches were used to prognostify and predict outcome in patients with breast cancer. During the last 11 years, 5 molecular subtypes of breast carcinoma (luminal A, luminal B, Her2-positive, basal-like, and normal breast-like) have been characterized and intensively studied. As genomic research evolves, further subtypes of breast cancers into new “molecular entities” are expected to occur. For example, a new and rare breast cancer subtype, known as claudin-low, has been recently found.

“There is no doubt that global gene expression analyses using high-throughput biotechnologies have drastically improved our understanding of breast cancer as a heterogeneous disease”, say Lavasani and Moinfar. “The main question is, however, whether new molecular techniques such as gene expression profiling (or signature) should be regarded as the gold standard for identifying breast cancer subtypes.” When reviewing the literature, the two scientists discovered major problems with current molecular techniques and classification including poor definitions, lack of reproducibility, and lack of quality control. They conclude: “The current molecular approaches cannot be incorporated into routine clinical practice and treatment decision making as they are immature or even can be misleading.”

The “basal-like” breast cancer subtype represents one of the most popular breast cancer “entities”. However, the authors revealed some major problems and misconceptions with and about this subtype and denote the term “basal-like” as misleading. They come to the conclusion that there is no evidence that expression of basal-type cytokeratins in a given breast cancer, regardless of other established prognostic factors, does have any impact on clinical outcome. Lavasani and Moinfar are convinced that these so-called basal-like carcinomas do not reflect a single, biologically uniform group of breast cancers. Indeed, they show significant variations in their phenotypes, grades, immunoprofiles, and clinical outcomes. (Text by K. Maedefessel-Herrmann)

M. A. Lavasani and F. Moinfar, J. Biophotonics 5(4), 345-366 (2012); http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jbio.201100097

Journal of Biophotonics publishes cutting edge research on interactions between light and biological material. The journal is highly interdisciplinary, covering research in the fields of life sciences, medicine, physics, chemistry, and enginieering. The scope extends from basic research to clinical applications. Connecting scientists who try to understand basic biological processes using light as a diagnostic and therapeutic tool, the journal offers a platform where the physicist communicates with the biologist and where the clinical practitioner learns about the latest tools for diagnosis of diseases. JBP offers fast publication times: down to 20 days from acceptance to publication. Latest Journal Impact Factor (2010): 4.240 (ISI Journal Citation Reports 2010)

Regina Hagen
Journal Publishing Manager | Editorial Physics Department
Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA
Rotherstr. 21, 10245 Berlin, Germany
Fon: +49 (0) 30/ 47 03 13 21
Fax: +49 (0) 30/ 47 03 13 99
E-Mail: regina.hagen@wiley.com

Lavasani and F. Moinfar | Wiley-VCH
Further information:
http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jbio.201100097
http://www.wiley.com

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Nanoparticle Exposure Can Awaken Dormant Viruses in the Lungs
16.01.2017 | Helmholtz Zentrum München - Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt

nachricht Cholera bacteria infect more effectively with a simple twist of shape
13.01.2017 | Princeton University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

Im Focus: How to inflate a hardened concrete shell with a weight of 80 t

At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).

Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...

Im Focus: Bacterial Pac Man molecule snaps at sugar

Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.

The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...

Im Focus: Newly proposed reference datasets improve weather satellite data quality

UMD, NOAA collaboration demonstrates suitability of in-orbit datasets for weather satellite calibration

"Traffic and weather, together on the hour!" blasts your local radio station, while your smartphone knows the weather halfway across the world. A network of...

Im Focus: Repairing defects in fiber-reinforced plastics more efficiently

Fiber-reinforced plastics (FRP) are frequently used in the aeronautic and automobile industry. However, the repair of workpieces made of these composite materials is often less profitable than exchanging the part. In order to increase the lifetime of FRP parts and to make them more eco-efficient, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) and the Apodius GmbH want to combine a new measuring device for fiber layer orientation with an innovative laser-based repair process.

Defects in FRP pieces may be production or operation-related. Whether or not repair is cost-effective depends on the geometry of the defective area, the tools...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Multiregional brain on a chip

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

New technology enables 5-D imaging in live animals, humans

16.01.2017 | Information Technology

Researchers develop environmentally friendly soy air filter

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>