The neu-oncogene: more than a prognostic indicator?

Hum Pathol. 1994 Dec;25(12):1264-8. doi: 10.1016/0046-8177(94)90083-3.


Overexpression of the neu-protein, evidenced as membrane staining by immunohistochemistry, is detected in approximately 20% of invasive duct cell carcinomas, in approximately 50% of in situ duct cell carcinomas, and in almost 100% of cases of Paget's disease. Apart from a growth stimulatory effect, the molecule plays an important role in cell motility of tumor cells by the activity of a motility factor, which acts as a specific ligand for the neu-protein. The motility factor induces chemotaxis of neu-overexpressing breast cancer cells. The motility function of the neu-protein may lead to an increased metastatic potential of neu-overexpressing breast tumors. Also in Paget's disease of the breast, a motility factor secreted by epidermal keratinocytes attracts the neu-overexpressing Paget's cells by chemotaxis and leads to invasion of the epidermis by the tumor cells.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers, Tumor / genetics
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / metabolism
  • Breast Neoplasms / genetics
  • Breast Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Breast Neoplasms / pathology
  • Carcinoma in Situ / metabolism
  • Carcinoma in Situ / pathology
  • Carcinoma, Ductal, Breast / metabolism
  • Carcinoma, Ductal, Breast / pathology
  • Cell Membrane / metabolism
  • Cell Movement
  • Gene Expression
  • Humans
  • Paget's Disease, Mammary / metabolism
  • Paget's Disease, Mammary / pathology
  • Prognosis
  • Receptor, ErbB-2* / genetics
  • Receptor, ErbB-2* / metabolism


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Receptor, ErbB-2