Mast cells in breast cancer

Anticancer Res. 1993 May-Jun;13(3):785-8.


The number of stromal mast cells was counted in 187 breast carcinomas. The number of mast cells/mm2 of tumour stroma was studied in relation to clinical, histological and quantitative prognostic factors and survival. A high number of mast cells in tumour stroma was significantly related to low S phase fraction (p = 0.001), DNA diploidy (p = 0.028), high proportion of intraductal growth (p = 0.003) and high degree of tubule formation (p = 0.044). Large tumours showed a lower number of mast cells in stroma (p = 0.08). A non-significant trend was found between mast cell count and axillary lymph node status, sex steroid receptor content, histological type, morphometric nuclear factors and mitotic frequency. In survival analysis a high mast cell count (over 10 g per mm2 of tumour stroma) was related to a favorable prognosis (p = 0.04). The present results confirm previous results in that changes in mast cell count are related to histopathological characteristics and clinical outcome in breast cancer.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Breast Neoplasms / mortality
  • Breast Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Cell Count
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Mast Cells / pathology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Prognosis
  • Survival Analysis