Triple negative breast cancer (TNBC), usually presenting with a very aggressive phenotype, is a heterogeneous entity. We aim to discuss new biomarkers, suitable for prognostic and predictive purposes. We retrospectively collected clinical variables and immunohistochemical characteristics of early TNBCs, specifically focusing on the prognostic and predictive significance of tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) and androgen receptor (AR) expression, assessing their correlation with clinical variables. Among 159 patients, TILs were significantly higher in younger patients and with lower BMI, and in tumors with higher ki-67 and greater nodal involvement; conversely, AR was significantly higher in older patients and in tumors with lower ki-67. Interestingly and in line with literature, both TILs level and ARs expression were lower within metastatic sites, in patients who developed distant metastases, compared to those found in the primary site. Small (pT1) and node negative tumors were highly represented and no correlation of either TILs or AR with prognosis could be observed. Our findings support the use of stromal TILs to identify a more aggressive, but chemo-sensitive phenotype, mostly represented in younger women, while AR may identify a less aggressive, slow-growing luminal TNBC subtype, more common among older patients. TILs and AR are worth implementing in routine clinical practice to refine prognosis even if, in our case series, we couldn't identify a significant correlation of the two variables with either disease-free and overall survival.

Insights for the application of TILs and AR in the treatment of TNBC in routine clinical practice

De Sanctis, Rita;Tinterri, Corrado;Roncalli, Massimo;Santoro, Armando
2020-01-01

Abstract

Triple negative breast cancer (TNBC), usually presenting with a very aggressive phenotype, is a heterogeneous entity. We aim to discuss new biomarkers, suitable for prognostic and predictive purposes. We retrospectively collected clinical variables and immunohistochemical characteristics of early TNBCs, specifically focusing on the prognostic and predictive significance of tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) and androgen receptor (AR) expression, assessing their correlation with clinical variables. Among 159 patients, TILs were significantly higher in younger patients and with lower BMI, and in tumors with higher ki-67 and greater nodal involvement; conversely, AR was significantly higher in older patients and in tumors with lower ki-67. Interestingly and in line with literature, both TILs level and ARs expression were lower within metastatic sites, in patients who developed distant metastases, compared to those found in the primary site. Small (pT1) and node negative tumors were highly represented and no correlation of either TILs or AR with prognosis could be observed. Our findings support the use of stromal TILs to identify a more aggressive, but chemo-sensitive phenotype, mostly represented in younger women, while AR may identify a less aggressive, slow-growing luminal TNBC subtype, more common among older patients. TILs and AR are worth implementing in routine clinical practice to refine prognosis even if, in our case series, we couldn't identify a significant correlation of the two variables with either disease-free and overall survival.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11699/55421
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