HER-2/neu Gene Overexpression in Resectable Gastric Cancer and its Relationship with Histopathologic Subtype, Grade, and Stage

Document Type : Original Article


1 Radiation Oncology Department, Cancer Research Center, Omid Hospital, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences (MUMS), Mashhad, Iran

2 Pathology Department, Cancer Research Center, Omid Hospital, MUMS, Mashhad, Iran

3 Biostatistics Department, MUMS, Mashhad, Iran


HER-2/neu gene is overexpressed in diverse human cancers and studies suggest a role of its product – p185 protein – in tumor progression by specifically promoting the invasive capacity of tumor cells. Our aim was to evaluate HER-2/neu content in resectable gastric cancer in this geographical region and assess the relationship between p185 expression and clinicopathologic tumor parameters.
Materials and Methods
This was a retrospective analysis of 100 specimens from 100 patients with resectable gastric carcinoma. Indirect immunostaining was used to evaluate the expression of this receptor in formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue samples.
HER-2/neu overexpression was present in 26 (26%) of 100 gastric carcinomas. This was significantly more common in the intestinal type of gastric cancer (33%) compared to diffuse (5%) or the mixed type (0%). HER-2/neu overexpression was also more common in well-differentiated gastric cancer versus other grades as. However, it was not associated with gender, age at diagnosis or clinical stage.
HER-2/neu amplification is common in the intestinal and well-differentiated gastric carcinomas. There is no correlation between HER-2/neu expression and tumor stage. The relatively high percentage of HER-2/neu positive tumors may provide a useful target for immunotherapy of these cancers.


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