The study of changes in proliferation as a marker of treatment benefit during presurgical endocrine treatment of breast cancer has become increasingly popular, particularly using the nuclear marker Ki67, and holds the potential for prioritizing new treatments for full clinical development. There are weakly significant relationships between Ki67 change and clinical response that differ according to data handling. In the neoadjuvant Immediate Preoperative Anastrozole, Tamoxifen, or Combined with Tamoxifen trial, suppression of Ki67 at both 2 and 12 weeks was greater with the aromatase inhibitor anastrozole than with either tamoxifen or the combination of anastrozole and tamoxifen. We report here that absolute values of Ki67 after 2 weeks were also significantly lower with anastrozole than with tamoxifen and the combination. This indicates that it may be possible to make such comparisons using surgical samples only. We argue that these changes in proliferation and concurrent changes in apoptosis may be expected to be more predictive of adjuvant benefit from endocrine therapy than clinical response.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research