Angiogenesis and tumor grading in primary breast cancer patients: an analysis of 158 needle core biopsies

Vol. 47 No. 3, 2006


S. Vameşu

Angiogenesis, the formation of new blood vessels from a preexisting vascular bed, is a complex multistep process. To investigate how tumor angiogenesis correlates with tumor grading in breast carcinoma diagnosed on core biopsy, microvessels were counted (and graded the density of microvessels) within the initial invasive carcinomas of 158 patients. Using light microscopy, the number of microvessels was counted manually in a subjectively selected hot spot (in the most active areas of neovascularization per 400x field), and their values were separated as above or below median (low and high), without knowledge of the outcome in the patient or any other pertinent variable. When the mean values of MVD of the various groups defined by tumor grading were compared, significant difference was noted (P = 2.61E-17). When the mean values of MVD of the groups defined by tumor grading risk were compared, significant difference was noted (P = 7.68E-05). When tumors were classified as high or low MVD, based on a cut-off value (30.70175 microvessels/square-mm), cases with high MVD were significantly more numerous in MSBR four patients. MVD did show a relationship with groups defined by MSBR grade (P = 3.25209E-07) or with tumor grading risk (P = 2.54181E-06). Assessment of tumor angiogenesis may therefore prove valuable in selecting patients with early breast carcinoma for aggressive therapy.

Corresponding author: Sorin Vameşu, MD, PhD, e-mail:

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