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This article is part of the supplement: Abstracts of the 16th International Charles Heidelberger Symposium on Cancer Research

Open Access Poster presentation

In vivo pulmonary metastatic profile of breast cancer cell lines expressing hormonal receptors versus triple negative

M João Carvalho123*, A Margarida Abrantes23, Mafalda Laranjo23, Francisco Falcão1, Silvério Cabrita4, M Filomena Botelho1, Carlos F de Oliveira3 and Isabel Torgal1

Author Affiliations

1 Gynaecology Service, University Hospitals of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal

2 Biophysics/Biomathematics Institute, IBILI, Faculty of Medicine, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal

3 CIMAGO, Faculty of Medicine, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal

4 Experimental Pathology Institute, Faculty of Medicine, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal

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BMC Proceedings 2010, 4(Suppl 2):P43  doi:10.1186/1753-6561-4-S2-P43

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published:24 September 2010

© 2010 Carvalho et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Poster presentation

Breast cancer metastized to lungs is a challenge considering clinical management and molecular processes. The interaction between tumor cells and lung environment as well as the influence of hormonal receptor (HR) are a question of debate.

The aim of this study is the characterization of pulmonary metastatic spread in vivo of breast cancer cell lines that express HR comparing with triple negative (TN) after injection in the tail vein.

It was performed injection in the tail vein of female mice Balb/c nude with 1.5×106 cells of each breast cancer cell line (MCF7 and HCC1806) previously labeled with 99mTc-HMPAO. Imagiological studies with 99mTc-HMDP and 99mTc-MIBI were performed between 7th and 8th weeks and then sacrificed. The lungs were submitted to histological image analysis focusing on regions of interest (ROI), in order to obtain lesion areas.

Tumor cells injected labeled with 99mTc-HMPAO showed a preference embolization to the lungs. The ROI analysis of imagiological studies with 99mTc-HMDP and 99mTc- MIBI did not reveal significant differences according to each cell type. Histology showed metastatic lung foci in all animals injected. On one hand, the number of lung foci was not significantly different considering MCF7 and HCC1806 injection. On the other hand, the mean area of lung metastasis in MCF7 cases were significantly higher than in HCC1806 (p = 0.023).

The mice injected with HR positive breast cancer cells in the tail vein were associated with higher lung metastatic areas than TN cells. This emphasizes the influence of HR in the expression of growth factors and pulmonary neovascularization that is not still delineated.