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Andergassen, Ulrich; Vogl, Anja; Mumm, Jan-Niclas; Koelbl, Alexandra C.; Hutter, Stefan; Rack, Brigitte; Friese, Klaus and Jeschke, Udo (2016): Immunocytochemical Characterization of Disseminated Tumour Cells from Bone Marrow of Breast Cancer Patients. In: Anticancer Research, Vol. 36, No. 6: pp. 3217-3222

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Background: The occurrence of disseminated tumour cells in bone marrow of patients with breast cancer is linked to a worse prognosis. We present a method for DTC detection from bone marrow samples based on immunocytochemistry, using breast cancer -associated glycosylation molecules as markers for detection and characterization. Materials and Methods: A double immunofluorescence staining of a pan-cytokeratin (CK) marker and either Tn or O-Acetyl-GD3 was carried out in artificial and patient bone marrow samples. Results: The sample in which most cells stained positive for CK/Tn and CK10-AC-GD3, was obtained from a patient who certainly had remote metastases. All other bone marrow samples showed heterogenous staining, so no correlation to tumour characteristics could he revealed. Conclusion: A certain characterization of tumour cells can be achieved by a double staining of hone marrow samples with CK and a glycosylation marker. For future studies, analysis should be extended to a larger patient collective and further-examination of more glycosylation markers should be carried out.

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