Beneficial effect of adjuvant tamoxifen therapy in primary breast cancer patients with high oestrogen receptor values

Lancet. 1985 Jan 5;1(8419):16-9. doi: 10.1016/s0140-6736(85)90966-3.


Oestrogen receptor concentrations were measured in primary tumours of 291 postmenopausal breast cancer patients with high risk of recurrence. These patients were a subset of the 1650 patients participating in the Danish Breast Cancer Cooperative Group's trial of adjuvant treatment with tamoxifen (30 mg daily for one year). A cut-off point of 10 fmol/mg cytosol protein and the use of a Cox proportional hazards model distinguished between patients with long recurrence-free survivals and those with early recurrent disease. The use of this model also showed that patients with an oestrogen-receptor content below 100 fmol/mg did not benefit from the endocrine therapy, while those with concentrations above 100 fmol/mg had a significantly longer recurrence-free survival. This finding is consistent with the response of advanced breast cancer to endocrine treatment.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Breast Neoplasms / analysis
  • Breast Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Breast Neoplasms / pathology
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lymphatic Metastasis
  • Menopause
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local
  • Neoplasms, Hormone-Dependent / drug therapy
  • Receptors, Estrogen / analysis*
  • Risk
  • Tamoxifen / therapeutic use*


  • Receptors, Estrogen
  • Tamoxifen