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Thymidine phosphorylase expression and stromal vascularity in ductal carcinoma in situ of the breast
  1. N B Teo1,
  2. B S Shoker1,
  3. C Jarvis1,
  4. J P Sloane1,
  5. C Holcombe2
  1. 1Department of Pathology, University of Liverpool, Duncan Building, Daulby Street, Liverpool L69 3GA, UK
  2. 2Breast Unit, Linda McCartney Centre, Royal Liverpool University Hospital, Prescot Street, Liverpool L7 8XP, UK
  1. Correspondence to:
 Mr C Holcombe
 Breast Unit, Linda McCartney Centre, Royal Liverpool University Hospital, Prescot Street, Liverpool L7 8XP, UK;


Aims: Periductal angiogenesis in ductal carcinoma in situ is associated with an increased risk of subsequently developing a recurrence. This study aimed to (1) identify the relation between periductal and stromal vascularity and recurrence and (2) determine whether thymidine phosphorylase (TP) is associated with angiogenesis or recurrence in ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS).

Methods: Twenty cases of DCIS that did not subsequently recur, 20 that developed a subsequent in situ recurrence, and 12 that developed a subsequent invasive recurrence were investigated. Periductal and stromal (hotspot) microvessel density were determined quantitatively using antibodies to CD34 and von Willebrandt factor (vWF). TP expression by DCIS was assessed semiquantitatively using the H score method.

Results: Stromal and periductal microvessel density assessed by anti-vWF gave similar mean values, and showed a strong positive correlation. When angiogenesis was assessed with anti-CD34 this association was lost. Not only were the mean values for both types of microvessel density higher than those obtained with anti-vWF, but the periductal microvessel density was significantly greater than the stromal microvessel density. TP expression was associated with stromal microvessel density assessed with anti-vWF, but not with anti-CD34. TP expression was not related to recurrence. No significant difference was identified in TP expression or stromal vascularity in DCIS between cases that recurred as DCIS and those that recurred as invasive carcinoma.

Conclusions: Recurrent in situ or invasive disease after excision of DCIS does not appear to be related to stromal microvessel density or to TP expression by DCIS cells.

  • ductal carcinoma in situ
  • microvessel density
  • thymidine phosphorylase
  • recurrence
  • BSA, bovine serum albumin
  • DCIS, ductal carcinoma in situ
  • IMS, industrial methylated spirits
  • MVD, microvessel density
  • TBS, Tris buffered saline
  • TP, thymidine phosphorylase
  • VEGF, vascular endothelial growth factor
  • VEGFR, vascular endothelial growth factor receptor
  • vWF, von Willebrandt factor

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