ASCO, CAP Release Guideline for Breast Cancer Testing

Article covers details for immunohistochemical testing of estrogen, progesterone receptors
By Eric Metcalf
HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, April 20 (HealthDay News) -- A guideline from the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and the College of American Pathologists (CAP) has been issued with the intention of improving the accuracy of immunohistochemical testing for estrogen and progesterone receptors in breast cancer. The guideline was published online April 19 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology and the Archives of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine.

M. Elizabeth H. Hammond, M.D., of the University of Utah School of Medicine in Salt Lake City, and colleagues recommend that estrogen receptor (ER) and progesterone receptor (PgR) status be determined on all invasive breast cancers and cancer recurrences.

The authors further advise that assays be considered positive if at least 1 percent of the tumor nuclei in the sample are positive in the presence of expected reactivity of internal and external controls. The time from tumor removal to fixation should be limited to no more than an hour, and tissue specimens must be fixed in 10-percent neutral buffered formalin for six to no more than 72 hours before processing, the authors recommend.

"The main goal of the ASCO/CAP ER/PgR guideline is to improve the accuracy of test results and ensure that patients receive appropriate care like endocrine therapy, as it has the potential to improve survival and save lives," Antonio C. Wolff, M.D., co-chair of the ASCO/CAP Hormone Receptor Testing in Breast Cancer Panel, said in a prepared statement.

Several co-authors disclosed relationships with testing-related companies.

Abstract - Journal of Clinical Oncology
Full Text - Journal of Clinical Oncology
Abridged Version - Archives of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine

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