Synuclein gamma (SNCG), previously identified as a breast cancer-specific gene (BCSG1), is highly expressed in breast carcinomas but not in normal epithelium. SNCG regulates many pathways in growth and progression of breast cancer. To determine if SNCG is a biomarker for clinical prognosis of breast cancer, we generated a panel of murine monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against human SNCG and correlated SNCG protein expression in 358 clinical breast cancer specimens with clinical outcome. A panel of 14 mAbs was characterized by ELISA, immunoprecipitation (IP), Western blot, immunocytochemistry and immunohistochemistry. SNCG protein expression was determined in 438 clinical breast specimens by immunohistochemical analysis using mAb 5C5. Expression of SNCG was strongly correlated with the stage, lymph node involvement, metastasis, tumor size and Her-2 status, but its expression was not associated with ER and PR expression status. While 71.4% of advanced breast cancers were positive for SNCG expression, only 26.8% of Stage I/II breast cancers were positive for SNCG expression and 5.2% of benign hyperplasia expressed SNCG. SNCG protein was not detectable in normal tissue adjacent to breast cancer. After a median follow-up of 64 months, patients with an SNCG-positive tumor had a significantly shorter disease-free survival and overall survival and a high probability of death compared no expression of SNCG. Multivariate analysis demonstrated that SNCG was a strong independent prognostic variable. SNCG is a new unfavorable prognostic marker for breast cancer progression and a potential target for breast cancer treatment.
(c) 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.