Expression and prognostic significance of ECT2 in invasive breast cancer

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To investigate the expression of epithelial cell transforming sequence 2 (ECT2) in invasive breast cancer and its prognostic significance.


ECT2 immunohistochemical detection was performed in 165 breast cancer specimens and 100 normal control tissues. Univariable and multivariable Cox proportional hazards regression model analysis was used to confirm independent prognostic factors. The PHREG procedure linear hypotheses testing method was used to analyse survival data.


Expression of ECT2 in breast cancer was significantly higher than that of the normal control group (p<0.001), and it was related to tumour grade, the status of lymph node metastasis, TNM staging, recurrence status, menopausal status, and the Ki-67 proliferation index (p<0.05), and not related to age, tumour size, tumour type, expression of estrogen receptor, progesterone receptor and human epidermal growth factor 2, and triple-negative disease (p>0.05). Univariable analysis showed that expression of ECT2, the status of lymph node metastasis, triple-negative disease and Ki-67 proliferation index were related to the overall survival of patients with breast cancer (p<0.001, p=0.006, p=0.001, p=0.041, respectively). PHREG procedure linear hypotheses testing results for overall survival revealed that high expression of ECT2, lymph node metastasis, triple-negative disease and high Ki-67 proliferation index predicted lower overall survival rates. Multivariable Cox regression indicated that high expression of ECT2 and triple-negative disease were independent prognostic factors for patients with breast cancer (p<0.001, p=0.004, respectively).


Expression of ECT2 may be one of the main causes of the occurrence and development of breast cancer, and high expression of ECT2 as an independent prognostic factor predicts a poor prognosis. ECT2 could also be a potential molecular target for designing therapeutic strategies for breast cancer.

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