Aims: To analyse the distribution of Nestin expression in different breast tumours and to determine the prognostic impact of Nestin expression.
Methods: Nestin expression was immunohistochemically analysed in a cohort of 245 invasive breast cancer patients treated with therapeutic surgery followed by anthracycline-based chemotherapy using a semi-quantitative scoring system.
Results: Nestin was exclusively expressed in grade III breast carcinoma and preferentially expressed in basal-like and triple negative cancers. Nestin-positive tumours displayed high proliferation rates and p53 nuclear expression. Lymph-node positive patients with Nestin-positive cancers had a shorter breast cancer specific survival; however Nestin was not an independent prognostic factor on multivariate analysis.
Conclusions: Nestin expression is preferentially found in basal-like and triple negative breast carcinomas. Further studies are warranted to define the biological role played by Nestin in these subgroups of breast cancers.