Characterization of HER2/neu and topoisomerase IIa status by FISH in locally advanced breast cancer

Cristina Corzo Contero, Ignacio Tusquets Trias De Bes, Marta Salido Galeote, Josep Mari, Corominas Torres, Berta Laquente Saez, Meritxel Bellet Ezquerra, Xavier Fabregat Mayol, Sergio Serrano Figueras, Francesc Solé Ristol

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Background. HER2/neu encodes a receptor related to breast cancer pathogenesis and topoisomerase IIa is an enzyme involved in response to anthracycline chemotherapy. The aim of this study is to analyse HER2/neu and topoisomerase IIa in a homogenous series of 49 patients with locally-advanced breast cancer (LABC) to determine their status and predictive value with respect to response to treatment. Material and methods. Paraffin-embedded tissues samples from patients with LABC (prior to their neoadjuvant chemotherapy programme) were analysed using the FISH technique. Results. HER2 amplification was noted in 29% of cases of which 77% presented amplification in the topoisomerase IIa gene, 15% had deletion and 8% did not show any aberration in topoisomerase IIa status. Conclusions. These preliminary analyses show a correlation between HER2 amplification and topoisomerase IIa status (92%), and suggest that patients with non-amplified HER2/neu or topoisomerase IIa have better response and have and increase (albeit not statistically significant) in disease- free survival (DFS). However, the limited numbers of patients in the study preclude definitive conclusion regards the value of these genes in predicting patient response to anthracycline-based chemotherapy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)289-294
JournalClinical and Translational Oncology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2004


  • FISH
  • HER2/neu
  • Locally advanced breast cancer
  • Predictive value
  • Topoisomerase IIa


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