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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


eISSN: 1643-3750

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Increased Expression of c-Met is Associated with Chemotherapy-Resistant Breast Cancer and Poor Clinical Outcome

Lizhou Jia, Xiaobing Yang, Wei Tian, Siqi Guo, Wenbin Huang, Wei Zhao

(Key Laboratory of Antibody Technique of National Health and Family Planning Commission, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, Jiangsu, China (mainland))

Med Sci Monit 2018; 24: LBR8239-8249

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.913514

BACKGROUND: The relevance of c-Met expression as a prognostic or predictive clinical indicator in chemotherapy-resistant breast cancer remains unknown. The aims of this study were to investigate the expression of c-Met in breast cancer tissues and its association with expression of type II topoisomerase (TOPO II), including in patients who received neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC), and to investigate chemotherapy resistance in vitro in breast cancer cell lines.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Tissue samples from 255 patients with breast cancer, with matched adjacent normal breast tissue, were used in tissue microarrays (TMAs). c-Met protein expression levels were determined using immunohistochemistry. Forty-five cases of breast cancer treated with NAC were studied to investigate the association between c-Met and TOPO II expression and clinical outcome. Chemotherapy resistance was evaluated in vitro in the MCF-7 and MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cell lines.
RESULTS: Expression of c-Met protein was increased in breast cancer tissue compared with normal breast tissue. In breast cancer tissue samples, increased c-Met expression was significantly associated with increased Ki-67 expression, tumor size, tumor stage, and TOPO II expression, and with reduced overall survival (OS) rates. Increased c-Met expression and reduced TOPO II expression were associated with chemotherapy resistance. In breast cancer cell lines, knockdown of c-Met expression induced TOPO II expression and increased tumor cell sensitivity to chemotherapy.
CONCLUSIONS: The findings of this study support a role for c-Met as a clinical prognostic marker and for c-Met and TOPO II as predictive markers for response to chemotherapy in patients with breast cancer.

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