IJMS, Vol. 19, Pages 3941: Biological Aggressiveness of Subclinical No-Mass Ductal Carcinoma In Situ (DCIS) Can Be Reflected by the Expression Profiles of Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition Triggers (International Journal of Molecular Sciences)
Epithelial-mesenchymal transitions (EMTs) have been recently implicated in the process of cancer progression. The aim of this study was to assess how the preoperative expression patterns of EMT biomarkers correlate with the risk of postoperative invasion in ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) found on stereotactic breast biopsies. N-cadherin, Snail1, and secreted protein acidic and rich in cysteine (SPARC) immunoreactivity was observed in 8%, 62%, and 38% of tumors, respectively. Snail1 and SPARC expressions were significantly related to N-cadherin expression and to each other. The postoperative upgrading rate was associated with a positive preoperative expression of all biomarkers. Significance of Snail1 and SPARC persisted in multivariate analysis, but the impact of SPARC on invasion was more significant. When these two EMT triggers were considered together, the risk of invasion did not significantly differ between the subtypes of DCIS with single positive expression (SPARC-/Snail1+ vs. SPARC+/Snail1-). However, it was significantly lower in single-positive DCIS when compared to lesions of a double-positive profile (SPARC+/Snail1+). Moreover, there were no cases in the double-negative DCIS (SPARC-/Snail1-), with foci of infiltrating cancer found postoperatively in residual postbiopsy lesions. In contrast, DCIS with a combined high SPARC and Snail1 expression (intermediate or strong) had an invasive component in 66-100% of tumors.