Different classes of breast cancers were explored for their positivity for growth hormone-releasing hormone receptors (GHRH-R) in this pilot study, as no systematic evaluation of such tumors has been performed to date. Seventy-two small primary breast carcinomas were evaluated for GHRH-R expression by immunohistochemistry using a polyclonal antibody and a cutoff value of 10% staining. GHRH-R positivity was detected in 58% of all cases, 20/23 (87%) of invasive lobular carcinomas (ILC) and 22/46 (48%) of invasive ductal carcinomas (IDC). GHRH-R positivity was more frequent in grade 2 tumors (86%), as compared to grade 1 (18%) or grade 3 (47%) cancers. GHRH-R expression was not associated with mitotic scores, the Ki-67 labeling indices or nodal status. IDCs with casting-type calcifications on the mammogram showed positivity for GHRH-R in 9/12 (75%) cases. Most importantly, apocrine epithelium, and all 10 apocrine carcinomas added later to the study were GHRH-R-positive. These preliminary results suggest a greater than average GHRH-R expression in ILCs and IDCs associated with casting-type calcifications on the mammogram. Apocrine carcinomas seem uniformly positive for GHRH-R. Whether these findings could indicate a potential role of GHRH-antagonists in targeted treatment of these types of breast cancer requires further studies.
- Apocrine carcinoma
- Breast cancer
- Growth hormone-releasing hormone receptor
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine
- Microbiology (medical)
- Immunology and Allergy