Cell kinetics and tumor-associated antigen expression in human mammary carcinomas

A. Contegiacomo, R. M. Costantini, R. Muraro, P. Battista, C. Valli, L. Frati, R. Calderopoli, N. Zilembo, I. Falco, G. Petrella, A. R. Bianco

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Twenty-six primary breast carcinomas were studied to evaluate cell proliferation as assessed by thymidine labeling index (TLI), and antigenic phenotype, as defined by immunohistochemistry using eight monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) to tumor-associated antigens (TAAs). The majority of tumors had low TLI values. Reactivity to MAbs B72.3, CC49, CC83 (anti TAG 72), COL-12 (anti CEA) and MOv2 (against a tumor-associated mucoprotein) was restricted to <50% of the tumors studied, while MAbs B1.1 (anti CEA), MBrl and MBr8 (to tumor-associated carbohydrates) reacted with > 50% of the cases. Correlations between expression of TAAs and proliferative activity showed that the tumors could be divided into three groups, two characterized by either high proliferative activity and absence of antigenic expression or low proliferative activity and strong antigenic expression, and the third showing no relation between these two biological features. We defined two antigenic phenotypes associated with specific cellular kinetics: one characterized by negative immunoreaction with MAbs, CC49, CC83 and COL-12 and high proliferative activity; the other characterized by intense immunoreactivity with these antibodies and low proliferative activity. The data suggest that cell proliferation and antigenic phenotype may define biologic subsets of breast carcinomas.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)159-166
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Biological Markers
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Biochemistry


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