JOURNAL ARTICLE

Invasive micropapillary carcinoma of the breast: association of pathologic features with lymph node metastasis

Xiaojing Guo, Ling Chen, Ronggang Lang, Yu Fan, Xinmin Zhang, Li Fu
American Journal of Clinical Pathology 2006, 126 (5): 740-6
17050071
Invasive micropapillary carcinoma (IMPC) of the breast is characterized by a high incidence of axillary lymph node metastasis. To investigate the relationship between pathologic features and lymph node metastasis, 51 cases of breast carcinoma with IMPC components were studied. Immunohistochemical analysis for vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-C and VEGF receptor (VEGFR)-3 was performed, and lymphatic vessel density was measured. The main findings included a significantly increased number of positive lymph nodes and/or an increased rate of lymph node metastasis in IMPC with a higher histologic grade, prominent stromal infiltration of lymphocytes, and higher VEGF-C expression and lymphatic vessel density. The percentage of IMPC component in the tumor was not associated with the incidence of lymph node metastasis. The results suggest that the histologic grade, lymphatic vessel density, and lymphocyte infiltration of IMPC are the key factors that influence lymph node metastasis. Further studies are required to elucidate the mechanisms underlying the lymphotropism of this distinct variant of breast carcinoma.

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