Article Text

Download PDFPDF
BRCA1 Immunohistochemical Staining as a Prognostic Indicator in Uterine Serous Carcinoma
  1. James P. Beirne, MB, MRCOG*,
  2. Jennifer E. Quinn, PhD,
  3. Perry Maxwell, PhD, FRCPath,
  4. Steve E. Kalloger, MSc, BSc,
  5. Jessica McAlpine, MD, FRCPC§,
  6. C. Blake Gilks, MD, FRCPC,
  7. Ian J. G. Harley, BSc, MD, MRCOG and
  8. W. Glenn McCluggage, MD, FRCPath,
  1. *Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Antrim Area Hospital, Antrim; and
  2. Molecular Pathology Programme, Centre for Cancer Research and Cell Biology, Queens University Belfast, United Kingdom; Departments of
  3. Pathology and Laboratory Medicine and
  4. §Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Vancouver General Hospital and University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada; and Departments of
  5. Gynaecological Oncology and
  6. Pathology, Belfast Health and Social Care Trust, Belfast, United Kingdom.
  1. Address correspondence and reprint requests to James P. Beirne, MB, MRCOG, 33 Fortwilliam Demesne, Fortwilliam Park, Belfast, United Kingdom BT15 4FD. E-mail: jamesybeirne{at}


Objectives The objective of this study was to investigate the relationship between BRCA1 protein expression, as determined by immunohistochemistry, and clinical outcome in uterine serous carcinoma (USC).

Methods A tissue microarray containing duplicate cores of 73 cases of USC was immunohistochemically stained with mouse anti-BRCA1 (Ab-1) mouse monoclonal (MS110) antibody. The cores were scored in a semiquantitative manner evaluating both the distribution and intensity of nuclear staining. BRCA1 protein expression was correlated with progression-free survival.

Results Seventy-two of 73 cases were assessable, and there was a statistically significant decreased progression-free survival for those cases exhibiting tumor cell nuclei staining of 76% or greater (P = 0.0023).

Conclusions Our study illustrates that a low level of BRCA1 protein expression is a favorable prognostic indicator in USC, similar to what is observed in high-grade serous ovarian carcinoma. Further studies should focus on the BRCA1 status of USCs at a molecular level and also investigate whether BRCA1 protein expression is associated with response to chemotherapy in USC.

  • BRCA1
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Uterine serous carcinoma
  • Prognosis

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.


  • The authors declare no conflict of interest.