Characteristics and distribution of receptors for [D-TRP6]-luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone, somatostatin, epidermal growth factor, and sex steroids in 500 biopsy samples of human breast cancer

M. Fekete, J. L. Wittliff, Andrew V Schally

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194 Scopus citations


Binding capacities and apparent dissociation constants of receptors for [D-Trp6]-luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone ([D-Trp6]-LH-RH), somatostatin (SS-14), epidermal growth factor (EGF), and estrogen and progesterone were determined in 500 breast cancer specimens using multipoint assays. Specific binding sites greater than 10 fmol/mg cytosol protein for estrogen were found in 408 carcinomas (81.6%), and for progesterone in 340 specimens (68%). High affinity EGF receptors were present in membrane preparations from 335 samples (67%). In 260 to 500 samples (52%), two classes of [D-Trp6]-LH-RH membrane receptor sites were also detected, one class showing high affinity and low capacity, and the other class showing low affinity and high capacity; 178 biopsy samples (35.6%) exhibited binding sites for SS-14. Statistically significant inverse correlations were found between the binding capacities of estrogen and EGF receptors as well as between B(max) of progesterone and EGF receptors. Significant positive correlations were demonstrated between binding capacities of estrogen and progesterone and between B(max) of high affinity and low affinity binding sites of [D-Trp6]-LH-RH receptors. However, no correlation was found between the dissociation constants of different receptor sites in human breast cancer specimens. These results demonstrate that numerous human breast cancers, in addition to receptors for estrogen and progesterone, also show binding sites for EGF, [D-Trp6]-LH-RH and SS-14. The methods described herein permit a routine quantification of receptor sites for [D-Trp6]-LH-RH, SS-14, and EGF in membrane preparations of biopsy samples of breast cancer and can be used in conjunction with the determination of estrogen and progesterone receptors in nuclear-cytosolic extracts. The simultaneous measurements using a microanalytic approach allow the determination of peptide and steroid hormone receptors that might be involved in the response mechanisms of human breast cancer. It should be possible to correlate the levels of these receptors with clinical parameters to better identify endocrine-responsive neoplasms. This approach might be useful to guide a rational hormonal therapy in women with breast cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-147
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Clinical Laboratory Analysis
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 1 1989
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

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