Androgen receptor positive triple negative breast cancer: Clinicopathologic, prognostic, and predictive features.

Astvatsaturyan, Kristine, Yue, Yong, Walts, Ann E and Bose, Shikha
(2018) Androgen receptor positive triple negative breast cancer: Clinicopathologic, prognostic, and predictive features. PloS one, 13 (6). e0197827-e0197827.

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INTRODUCTION:Overexpression of the androgen receptor (AR) characterizes a distinct molecular subset of triple negative breast carcinomas (TNBC). The role of AR as a prognostic/predictive biomarker in TNBC is controversial, but increasing evidence suggests that this subset may respond to therapeutic agents targeting AR. Evaluation of AR has not been standardized, and criteria for selection of patients for antiandrogen therapy remain controversial. In this study we determine the appropriate threshold of AR immunoreactivity to define AR positive (AR+) TNBC, describe the clinicopathologic features of AR+ TNBC, and discuss the utility of AR positivity as a prognostic and predictive marker in TNBC. MATERIALS AND METHODS:135 invasive TNBC processed in accordance with ASCO/CAP guidelines, were immunostained for AR. Clinicopathologic features of AR+ TNBC were analyzed and compared to AR negative (AR-) TNBC. Patients' age, tumor size, tumor grade, lymph node status, proliferation rate, immunopositivity for EGFR, CK5/6, Ki-67, and disease free survival (DFS) were evaluated statistically. RESULTS:A 1% cutpoint was confirmed as the appropriate threshold for AR positivity. Using this cutpoint 41% of 135 TNBC were AR+. AR+ TNBC occurred in older women, were larger, had lower mean proliferation rate and increased incidence of axillary metastasis than AR- TNBC. 76% of TNBC with apocrine morphology were AR+. A subset of AR+TNBC expressed basal markers (EGFR and CK5/6). A prognostic model was created. SUMMARY:AR identifies a heterogeneous group of TNBC. Additional evaluation of EGFR expression allowed us to stratify TNBCs into 3 risk groups with significant differences in DFS and therapeutic implications: low-risk (AR+ EGFR-) which represents the LAR molecular subtype with the best prognosis and may benefit the most from anti-androgen therapies; high-risk (AR- EGFR+) which represents the basal molecular subtype with the worst prognosis and may benefit the most from chemotherapy regimens; intermediate-risk (AR+EGFR+ and AR-EGFR-) TNBC with an intermediate prognosis. Prospective trials are required to further validate this prognostic and predictive grouping.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Humans, Lymphatic Metastasis, Receptors, Androgen, Prognosis, Tumor Burden, Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic, Adult, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Middle Aged, Female, Neoplasm Grading, Triple Negative Breast Neoplasms
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 28 Feb 2019 11:06
Last Modified: 19 Jan 2023 01:00
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0197827
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