The combinatorial approach of lasercaptured microdissection and reverse transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction accurately determines HER2 status in breast cancer

E. Hofmann, R. Seeboeck, N. Jacobi, P. Obrist, S. Huter, C. Klein, K. Önder, C. Wiesner, H. Hundsberger, A. Eger

Publikation: Beitrag in FachzeitschriftArtikelBegutachtung

Abstract

Background: HER2 expression in breast cancer correlates with increased metastatic potential, higher tumor recurrence rates and improved response to targeted therapies. Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) and immunohistochemistry (IHC) are two methods commonly used for the analysis of HER2 in the clinic. However, lack of standardization, technical variability in laboratory protocols and subjective interpretation are major problems associated with these testing procedures. Methods: Here we evaluated the applicability of reverse-transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) for HER2 testing in breast cancer. We tested thirty formaldehyde-fixed and paraffin-embedded tumor samples by RT-qPCR, FISH and IHC and analysed and compared the data from the three methods. Results: We found that laser-captured microdissection is essential for the accurate determination of HER2 expression by RT-qPCR. When isolating RNA from total tumor tissue we obtained a significant number of false negative results. However, when using RNA from purified cancer cells the RT-qPCR data were fully consistent with FISH and IHC. In addition we provide evidence that ductal carcinomas might be further classified by the differential expression of HER3 and HER4. Conclusions: Laser-captured microdissection in combination with RT-qPCR is a precise and cost-effective diagnostic approach for HER2 testing in cancer. The PCR assay is simple, accurate and robust and can easily be implemented and standardized in clinical laboratories.

OriginalspracheEnglisch
Aufsatznummer8
Seiten (von - bis)8
FachzeitschriftBiomarker Research
Jahrgang4
Ausgabenummer1
DOIs
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 7 Apr. 2016

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