Purpose: The aims of this study were to compare the expression of sarcosine metabolism-related proteins between invasive lobular carcinoma (ILC) and invasive ductal carcinoma (IDC) and to determine the implications of these results.
Materials and methods: Tissue microarrays were constructed, containing 30 samples from normal breast tissue, 114 samples from patients with ILC, and 692 samples from patients with IDC. Immunohistochemical staining was performed to examine the expression of sarcosine metabolism-related proteins [glycine N-methyltransferase, sarcosine dehydrogenase, and l-pipecolic acid oxidase (PIPOX)].
Results: The sarcosine metabolic phenotype differed between ILC and IDC (p<0.001). In IDC, sarcosine metabolic phenotype was distributed as null type (61.7%)>low sarcosine type (30.4%)>high sarcosine type (5.0%)>intermediate type (2.9%). However, in ILC, the sarcosine metabolic phenotype was distributed as low sarcosine type (61.4%)>null type (32.5%)>intermediate type (5.3%)>high sarcosine type (0.9%). PIPOX showed higher expression in ILC than in IDC (p<0.001) and correlated with androgen receptor (AR) positivity (p=0.001) in ILC.
Conclusion: Expression of sarcosine metabolism-related proteins differed between ILC and IDC. Low sarcosine type was the majority sarcosine metabolic phenotype of ILC. PIPOX expression was predominant in ILC and correlated with AR positivity.
Keywords: Breast cancer; lobular cancer; sarcosine.