Expression of VEGF in breast lesions: an immunohistochemical study

Shuaeb Bhat, Tania R. P., Saleem Hussain, Bushra Sahaf, Irfan Ansari


Background: Breast cancer is the most frequent cancer in India. During the last few years, several investigators have focused on tumor angiogenesis as a critical step in cancer development and progression. Among these, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is emerging as a prognostic marker in patients with several type of cancer including breast cancer. The aim of the study was to analyse the expression of VEGF in human breast cancer as compared to normal breast tissue and benign breast lesions by immunohistochemistry. Also, to assess the usefulness of VEGF as a predictor of aggressiveness of breast lesions.

Methods: Formalin fixed paraffin embedded sections of 10 cases of normal breast tissue, 20 cases of benign breast lesions and 20 cases of malignant breast lesions were taken up for the study and subjected to immunohistochemistry using VEGF.

Results: The intensity of VEGF immunostaining in normal breast, benign and malignant breast lesions was evaluated and scoring was graded as 0, 1+, 2+, 3+ and 4+. Statistical analysis was performed with Chi-Square test and significant differences were noted between these 3 groups (p value <0.05).

Conclusions:VEGF expression correlated well with the grade and stage of tumor indicating that VEGF positive tumors are biologically aggressive and are associated with poor prognosis but little is known about the implication of genetic alterations of VEGF in benign breast lesions.


Breast lesions, Immunohistochemistry, VEGF

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