Clinicopathologic significance of p53 immunostaining in adenocarcinoma of the breast

D. W. Visscher, F. H. Sarkar, S. Wykes, K. Kothari, J. Macoska, J. Crissman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Methanol/acetone-fixed frozen sections of 87 breast carcinomas were stained with a panel of three anti-p53 monoclonal antibodies that had specificities for wild-type, mutant, or combined wild-type plus mutant epitopes by using the avidin-biotin method. Nuclear staining was present in 13 (15%) of 87 cases with the mutant-specific antibody. The combined- specificity antibody stained 28 (32%) of 87 cases, including all but one of the tumors that was positive with the mutant-specific antibody. None of the cases reacted with the wild-type-specific antibody. Immunostaining for mutant form p53 was strongly correlated with adverse clinicopathologic factors, including poor differentiation, absence of estrogen receptor protein, nodal metastases, and large tumor size. In groups that were stratified by axillary node status, disease-free survival (52-month mean follow-up) was worse among cases with positive staining for either antibody. This difference was statistically significant in node-positive patients with the combined- specificity antibody (disease free, 22% [p53+] vs recurred, 57% [p53+]). We concluded that (1) immunostaining for mutant forms of p53 characterizes a clinically aggressive subset of breast tumors and may have prognostic utility in some patient populations, and (2) antibody-dependent-staining patterns for p53 may reflect epitope specificities of various mutant forms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)973-976
Number of pages4
JournalArchives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Issue number10
StatePublished - Jan 1 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Medical Laboratory Technology


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