Tumor Biology

, Volume 37, Issue 5, pp 6465–6475 | Cite as

Postmastectomy radiotherapy benefit in Chinese breast cancer patients with T1–T2 tumor and 1–3 positive axillary lymph nodes by molecular subtypes: an analysis of 1369 cases

  • Honghong Shen
  • Lin Zhao
  • Li Wang
  • Xiaozhen Liu
  • Xia Liu
  • Junjun Liu
  • Fengting Niu
  • Shuhua Lv
  • Yun Niu
Original Article


The aim of this study was to examine the association between molecular subtype (MST) and prognosis and research the postmastectomy radiotherapy (PMRT) effect in T1–T2 tumors with 1–3 positive axillary lymph nodes (ALNs). This retrospective study studied breast cancer patients with T1–T2 tumors and 1–3 positive ALNs according to MST: Luminal A, Luminal B, human epidermal growth factor receptor-2 (Her-2) positive, and Triple negative. The impact of adjuvant PMRT in T1–T2 tumors with 1–3 positive ALNs was also assessed. This study included 1369 patients: 33.0 % Luminal A, 42.9 % Luminal B, 11.9 % Her-2 positive, and 12.2 % Triple negative. On univariate and multivariate analyses, MST was associated with locoregional relapse (LRR). Kaplan–Meier analysis showed that PMRT significantly decreased LRR risk (p = 0.017) and distant metastasis (DM) risk (p < 0.0001). In subgroup analysis, PMRT showed significant benefits of improvement in LRR in patients with younger age, positive lymphovascular invasion (LVI), and ratio of positive lymph nodes (LNs) >25 %. Moreover, the nomogram could more accurately predict LRR (c-index 0.75) in T1–2N1 breast cancer patients. MST associated with patient outcomes in breast cancer patients with T1–T2 tumors and 1–3 positive ALN. It makes sense to offer PMRT for patients aged<40 years old, LVI, 2 and 3 positive lymph nodes, and ratio of positive LNs >25 %.


Breast cancer Tumor size Lymph nodes Molecular subtypes Postmastectomy radiotherapy Prognosis 



This work was funded by the National Science Foundation of China (81172532, 81470119).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflicts of interest


Ethical approval

This study was approved by the Tianjin Medical University Cancer Institute and Hospital, China and has been performed in accordance with the ethical standards laid down in the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments.


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Copyright information

© International Society of Oncology and BioMarkers (ISOBM) 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Honghong Shen
    • 1
  • Lin Zhao
    • 1
  • Li Wang
    • 1
  • Xiaozhen Liu
    • 1
  • Xia Liu
    • 2
  • Junjun Liu
    • 1
  • Fengting Niu
    • 1
  • Shuhua Lv
    • 3
  • Yun Niu
    • 1
  1. 1.Tianjin Medical University Cancer Institute and Hospital, National Clinical Research Center for Cancer, Key Laboratory of Cancer Prevention and Therapy of Tianjin, Key Laboratory of Breast Cancer Prevention and TherapyTianjin Medical University, Ministry of EducationTianjinChina
  2. 2.Department of OncologyGeneral Hospital of Tianjin Medical UniversityTianjinChina
  3. 3.Department of PathologyNankai University Affiliated HospitalTianjinChina

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