Histopathologic characteristics of background parenchymal enhancement (BPE) on breast MRI Journal Article


Authors: Sung, J. S.; Corben, A. D.; Brooks, J. D.; Edelweiss, M.; Keating, D. M.; Lin, C.; Morris, E. A.; Patel, P.; Robson, M.; Woods, M.; Bernstein, J. L.; Pike, M. C.
Article Title: Histopathologic characteristics of background parenchymal enhancement (BPE) on breast MRI
Abstract: Purpose: Breast fibroglandular tissue (FGT), as visualized on a mammogram (mammographic density, MD), is one of the strongest known risk factors for breast cancer. FGT is also visible on breast MRI, and increased background parenchymal enhancement (BPE) in the FGT has been identified as potentially a major breast cancer risk factor. The aim of this exploratory study was to examine the biologic basis of BPE. Methods: We examined the unaffected contra-lateral breast of 80 breast cancer patients undergoing a prophylactic mastectomy before any treatment other than surgery of their breast cancer. BPE was classified on the BI-RADS scale (minimal/mild/moderate/marked). Slides were stained for microvessel density (MVD), CD34 (another measure of endothelial density), glandular tissue within the FGT and VEGF. Spearman correlations were used to evaluate the associations between BPE and these pathologic variables. Results: In pre-menopausal patients, BPE was highly correlated with MVD, CD34 and glandular concentration within the FGT, and the pathologic variables were themselves highly correlated. The expression of VEGF was effectively confined to terminal duct lobular unit (TDLU) epithelium. The same relationships of the four pathologic variables with BPE were seen in post-menopausal patients, but the relationships were much weaker and not statistically significant. Conclusion: The strong correlation of BPE and MVD together with the high correlation of MVD with glandular concentration seen in pre-menopausal patients indicates that increased breast cancer risk associated with BPE in pre-menopausal women is likely to result from its association with increased concentration of glandular tissue in the FGT. The effective confinement of VEGF expression to the TDLUs shows that the signal for MVD growth arises directly from the glandular tissue. Further studies are needed to understand the basis of BPE in post-menopausal women. © 2018, Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature.
Keywords: immunohistochemistry; breast mri; vegf; background parenchymal enhancement; microvessel density; fibroglandular tissue
Journal Title: Breast Cancer Research and Treatment
Volume: 172
Issue: 2
ISSN: 0167-6806
Publisher: Springer  
Date Published: 2018-11-01
Start Page: 487
End Page: 496
Language: English
DOI: 10.1007/s10549-018-4916-6
PUBMED: 30140962
PROVIDER: scopus
DOI/URL:
Notes: Article -- Export Date: 1 November 2018 -- Source: Scopus
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MSK Authors
  1. Janice Sinae Sung
    33 Sung
  2. Malcolm Pike
    132 Pike
  3. Adriana Dionigi Corben
    56 Corben
  4. Mark E Robson
    365 Robson
  5. Elizabeth A Morris
    243 Morris
  6. Jonine L Bernstein
    101 Bernstein
  7. Prusha   Patel
    10 Patel
  8. Meghan   Woods
    13 Woods
  9. Christine Lin
    1 Lin