Correlated Immunohistochemical and Cytological Assays for the Prediction of Hematogenous Dissemination of Breast Cancer

Maja H. Oktay, Frank B. Gertler, Yi Fang Liu, Thomas E. Rohan, John S. Condeelis, Joan G. Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Although metastasis is a major cause of death from breast cancer, our ability to predict which tumors will metastasize is limited (American Cancer Society 2010). Proper assessment of metastatic risk and elucidating the underlying mechanisms of metastasis will help personalize therapy and may provide insight into potential therapeutic targets. Traditionally, histologic grading, staging, hormone receptors, HER2/Neu, and proliferation assays have been the gold standard on which oncologists based their treatment decisions. However, all of these are indirect measures of metastatic risk. Recent insights from intravital imaging directly address questions of mechanism and have led to a new way of using histologic and cytologic material to assess metastatic risk. This review describes the tumor microenvironment model of invasion and intravasation, as well as an emerging histopathologic application based on this model. In particular, the authors describe a new immunohistochemical approach to the assessment of metastatic risk based on the density of intravasation microenvironment sites called the tumor microenvironment of metastasis. In addition, they describe an isoform assay for the actin regulatory protein Mena using fine needle aspiration samples and the details about how these 2 assays may be applied in clinical practice in a synergistic way to assess the risk of metastasis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)168-173
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Histochemistry and Cytochemistry
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2012


  • breast cancer
  • fine needle aspiration (FNA) biopsy
  • immunohistochemical markers
  • metastasis
  • tumor microenvironment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Histology


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