Clinicopathologic characteristics and molecular subtypes of microinvasive carcinoma of the breast

Tumour Biol. 2015 Apr;36(4):2241-8. doi: 10.1007/s13277-014-2652-z. Epub 2015 Mar 24.


Patients with microinvasive carcinoma often have favorable prognosis, but it remains unclear whether this special type of breast cancer represents a distinct morphological entity with its own biological features and clinical behavior distinct from those of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS). The study is a retrospective analysis of a large patient cohort from a single institution. One hundred and thirty one microinvasive carcinoma and 451 DCIS cases were collected. ER, PR, HER2, and Ki67 were examined by immunohistochemistry in pathological sections. We assessed the clinicopathologic characteristics, molecular features, and survival status of microinvasive carcinoma and compared to those of DCIS. Microinvasive carcinoma differed from DCIS with respect to tumor size, lymph node status, and initial presentation (P < 0.05). There was a significant difference in nuclear grade among microinvasive carcinoma of different molecular subtype (P < 0.05). The clinicalpathologic features and outcomes of patients with microinvasive carcinoma were similar to those with DCIS. The 5-year OS rate for microinvasive carcinoma and DCIS patients was 99.0 and 99.2%, respectively. A combination of pathologic, clinical, and molecular factors may ultimately reveal more powerful and robust measures for disease classification than any one modality alone. Microinvasive carcinoma does not significantly predict for worse DFS or OS in comparison with patients with DCIS.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Carcinoma, Ductal, Breast / genetics*
  • Carcinoma, Ductal, Breast / pathology
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Estrogen Receptor alpha / biosynthesis
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic
  • Humans
  • Ki-67 Antigen / biosynthesis
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness / genetics*
  • Pathology, Molecular*
  • Receptor, ErbB-2 / biosynthesis


  • Estrogen Receptor alpha
  • Ki-67 Antigen
  • ERBB2 protein, human
  • Receptor, ErbB-2