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Serum Müllerian inhibiting substance levels are lower in premenopausal women with breast precancer and cancer

Andrew C McCoy1*, Beth Kliethermes1, Ke Zhang2, Wenyi Qin1, Robert Sticca1, Michael Bouton1 and Edward R Sauter1

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Surgery, University of North Dakota School of Medicine, Grand Forks, ND, USA

2 Department of Pathology, University of North Dakota School of Medicine, Grand Forks, ND, USA

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BMC Research Notes 2011, 4:152  doi:10.1186/1756-0500-4-152

Published: 26 May 2011



In preclinical studies, müllerian inhibiting substance (MIS) has a protective affect against breast cancer. Our objective was to determine whether serum MIS concentrations were associated with cancerous or precancerous lesions. Blood from 30 premenopausal women was collected and serum extracted prior to their undergoing breast biopsy to assess a suspicious lesion found on imaging or physical examination. Based on biopsy results, the serum specimens were grouped as cancer (invasive or ductal carcinoma in situ), precancer (atypical hyperplasia or lobular carcinoma in situ), or benign.


Serum from women with cancer and precancer (p = .0009) had lower MIS levels than serum from women with benign disease.


Our findings provide preliminary evidence for MIS being associated with current breast cancer risk, which should be validated in a larger population.