COX-2 expression in operable triple negative breast cancer: A hospital based cross-sectional study

Kailash Mosalpuria, The University of Texas School of Public Health


Objectives. Triple Negative Breast Cancer (TNBC) lack expression of estrogen receptors (ER), progesterone receptors (PR), and absence of Her2 gene amplification. Current literature has identified TNBC and over-expression of cyclo-oxygenase-2 (COX-2) protein in primary breast cancer to be independent markers of poor prognosis in terms of overall and distant disease free survival. The purpose of this study was to compare COX-2 over-expression in TNBC patients to those patients who expressed one or more of the three tumor markers (i.e. ER, and/or PR, and/or Her2). Methods. Using a secondary data analysis, a cross-sectional design was implemented to examine the association of interest. Data collected from two ongoing protocols titled "LAB04-0657: a model for COX-2 mediated bone metastasis (Specific aim 3)" and "LAB04-0698: correlation of circulating tumor cells and COX-2 expression in primary breast cancer metastasis" was used for analysis. A sample of 125 female patients was analyzed using Chi-square tests and logistic regression models. Results. COX-2 over-expression was present in 33% (41/125) and 28% (35/124) patients were identified as having TNBC. TNBC status was associated with elevated COX-2 expression (OR= 3.34; 95% CI= 1.40–8.22) and high tumor grade (OR= 4.09; 95% CI= 1.58–10.82). In a multivariable analysis, TNBC status was an important predictor of COX-2 expression after adjusting for age, menopausal status, BMI, and lymph node status (OR= 3.31; 95% CI: 1.26–8.67; p=0.01). Conclusion. TNBC is associated with COX-2 expression—a known marker of poor prognosis in patients with operable breast cancer. Replication of these results in a study with a larger sample size, or a future randomized clinical trial demonstrating an improved prognosis with COX-2 suppression in these patients would support this hypothesis.

Subject Area


Recommended Citation

Mosalpuria, Kailash, "COX-2 expression in operable triple negative breast cancer: A hospital based cross-sectional study" (2010). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI1474760.