VEGFR OVEREXPRESSION AS A PROMISING PREDICTIVE AND PROGNOSTIC BIOMARKER FOR BREAST CANCER
Background: The majority of breast cancer cases are presented in an advanced stage; hence, there is a need to have a biomarker that is able to function both as a predictive and prognostic tool for breast cancer. Since angiogenesis has been found to be closely related to the invasiveness of breast cancer, angiogenic marker such as vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) may be a promising marker for this cancer. Objective: The aim of this study is to determine the association between the VEGF receptor (VEGFR) expression with human epidermal growth factor receptor-2 (HER-2)/ neu and estrogen receptor (ER) /progesterone receptor (PR) expression in an attempt to clarify the role of VEGFR as a potentially novel predictive and prognostic biomarker for breast cancer. Materials and Methods: This study examined 40 tissue biopsies taken from patients diagnosed with breast cancer in H. Adam Malik Hospital Medan, Indonesia. Samples were analyzed by immunohistochemistry to determine the histopathology, grading, lymphovascular invasion and expression of VEGFR, HER-2/neu and ER/PR. Association between dependent and independent variables was conducted using chi-square test and logistic regression. Results: The majority of the cases in this study were infiltrating ductal carcinoma (90%), in stage III (70%), and showed positive TIL (75%). VEGFR expression was found to be upregulated in 21 samples (52.5%). HER-2/neu was positive in 14 patients (35.0%) and ER/PR was positive in 22 patients (55%). The expression of VEGFR positively correlated with HER-2/neu expression (p= 0.002) and negatively correlated with ER/PR expression (p= 0.012). Conclusion: Overexpression of VEGFR is a potential valuable predictive and prognostic biomarker for breast cancer. Antagonising VEGFR may serve as the future target therapy for the disease.
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