Background: Intratumorous hypoxia triggers a broad cellular response mediated by the transcription factor hypoxia inducible factor 1 (HIF-1). HIF-1a concentrations increase during breast carcinogenesis,\ud and are associated with poor prognosis. An earlier study noted two HIF-1a overexpression patterns: diffuse scattered throughout the tissue and confined to perinecrotic cells. Aims: To investigate the prognostic impact of these different HIF-1a overexpression patterns in relation to\ud its downstream effectors carbonic anhydrase (CA) IX and glucose transporter 1 (GLUT-1).\ud Methods: HIF-1a, CA IX, and GLUT-1 expression was studied by immunohistochemistry, including double\ud staining for CA IX and HIF-1a. Clinical data included disease free survival, lymph node status, and tumour size. Results: HIF-1a overexpression (44% of cases) had a perinecrotic (13.5%) or diffuse staining pattern (30.5%). CA IX expression was detectable in 12.5% of breast cancers, whereas GLUT-1 expression was seen in 29%, with both showing perinecrotic membrane staining. Perinecrotic HIF-1a overexpression was highly associated with CA IX and GLUT-1 overexpression, and double staining for HIF-1a and CA IX showed strong expression in the same cells. Diffusely overexpressed HIF-1a was not associated with CA IX or GLUT-1 expression. Patients with diffuse HIF-1a staining had a significantly better prognosis than patients with perinecrotically overexpressed HIF-1a.\ud Conclusions: Different regulation pathways of HIF-1a overexpression exist in breast cancer: (1) hypoxia induced, perinecrotic HIF-1a overexpression with strong expression of hypoxia associated genes (CA IX and GLUT-1), which is associated with a poor prognosis; and (2) diffuse HIF-1a overexpression lacking major hypoxia associated downstream effects, resulting in a more favourable prognosis
To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.