The expression of parathyroid hormone-related protein in human breast cancer with skeletal metastases
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The relationship between the expression of parathyroid hormone-related protein (PTHrP) by breast cancer and skeletal metastases, was investigated using a monoclonal antibody against human PTHrP (4133). The immunohistochemical localization of PTHrP was studied in sections of formalin-fixed, paraffin-embeded tissues from 28 breast cancers obtained surgically between 1980 and 1985. Of the 28 patients, 12 developed skeletal metastases, 8 developed lung metastases, and the other 8 were alive and disease-free at the time of this study. Sixteen of the 28 (57%) tumors showed positive immunoreactivity to 4133, the PTHrP positive ratio being 83% in the patients who developed skeletal metastases, 38% in those who developed lung metastases, and 38% in those without recurrence, respectively. Thus, a significantly higher proportion of the patients who developed skeletal metastases were positive for PTHrP than the other two groups (P < 0.05). Furthermore, the level of positive staining was strongly related to positivity for estrogen and progesterone receptors (P < 0.01). These results are consistent with the hypothesis that PTHrP might be necessary for metastases to erode bone and grow in skeletal sites, and its expression could be related to certain hormones.
Key Wordsparathyroid hormone-related protein breast cancer skeletal metastases
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