, Volume 34, Issue 1, pp 33-38

Tau expression correlated with breast cancer sensitivity to taxanes-based neoadjuvant chemotherapy

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Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate the correlation between tau expression in primary breast cancer and sensitivity to taxanes during neoadjuvant chemotherapy in patients with breast cancer. We used immunohistochemistry to examine tau expression in breast cancer biopsies from 113 primary breast cancer patients and evaluated the correlation between tau expression and taxane sensitivity. Twenty-eight (24.78 %, 28/113) patients were positive for tau expression. After taxanes-based neoadjuvant chemotherapy, 40 patients achieved pathological complete response (pCR) (35.4 %). Among the 40 patients with pCR, five (12.5 %) were positive for tau expression. In univariate analysis, estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor, human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2), and tau were found to be significantly predictive of a pCR (P = 0.001, 0.030, 0.002, and 0.025, respectively). Tau, ER, and HER2 status were significant for pCR on multivariate analysis (P = 0.025, 0.005, and 0.043, respectively). Tau expression was positively related to ER (P = 0.007) and progestin receptor (P = 0.008). In conclusion, tau protein expression correlated with breast cancer sensitivity to taxanes-based neoadjuvant chemotherapy; patients negative for tau expression were more likely to achieve pCR.