Title

The prognostic value of estrogen receptor immunocytochemistry (ERICA) in breast cancer does not depend on the immunostaining intensity

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

5-1-1996

Journal

Breast Disease

Volume

9

Issue

3

Keywords

Breast cancer; Estrogen receptor; Immunohistochemistry; Prognosis; Survival

Abstract

Estrogen receptor status (ER) is traditionally determined by the immunocytochemical assay (ERICA) utilizing a formula, the HSCORE, based on the stain intensity and the percentage of ER-positive cells (%PC). The stain intensity is difficult to control and its determination is subjective. To determine whether %PC alone can be used instead of HSCORE in determining ER status in breast cancer, frozen samples from 65 breast cancers were assayed for ER by the dextran-coated charcoal assay (DCCA), HSCORE, and %PC. %PC and HSCORE correlated well. ER status determined by any of the three methods was a significant prognostic factor. When applied to paraffin sections of a different group of 91 cancers, ER %PC and DCCA did not give significant results. We conclude that (1) %PC may be used instead of HSCORE for determining ER in tissue sections and (2) inconsistencies of the prognostic significance of ER may be due to differences in populations studied.

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