Resistin expression in breast cancer tissue as a marker of prognosis and hormone therapy stratification

Gynecol Oncol. 2012 Jun;125(3):742-50. doi: 10.1016/j.ygyno.2012.02.032. Epub 2012 Feb 24.


Objective: Adipocytokines are adipocyte-derived hormones and well documented to be involved in carcinogenesis. The expression of resistin, a newly discovered adipocytokine, in breast cancer tissues was determined and correlated with patient clinicopathological variables.

Methods: Resistin expression in breast cancer tissues and the normal adjacent breast tissues was analyzed by immunohistochemistry and was correlated with clinicopathological variables as well as recurrence rates by the chi-square test. The prognostic value of resistin for disease-free and overall survival was determined by Kaplan-Meier estimates, and the significance of differences between curves was evaluated by the log-rank test.

Results: High resistin expression was predominantly observed in breast cancer tissues but not the adjacent normal breast tissues. High resistin expression in breast cancer tissues was correlated significantly with tumor stage, tumor size, lymph node metastasis and estrogen receptor status. Hormone therapy, but not radiotherapy or chemotherapy, decreased the recurrence rate in patients with high resistin expression. While high resistin expression was associated with poor disease-free and overall survival, Cox regression analysis also revealed that resistin was an independent predictor of disease-free and overall survival.

Conclusions: High resistin expression in breast cancer tissue is associated with a more malignant clinicopathological status as well as poor patient survival. Resistin may therefore hold promise as an independent prognosis predictor for breast cancer, as a marker for hormone therapy stratification and as a potential therapeutic target.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers, Tumor / biosynthesis*
  • Breast Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Breast Neoplasms / pathology
  • Breast Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / metabolism
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Prognosis
  • Resistin / biosynthesis*


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • RETN protein, human
  • Resistin