Identification of molecular characteristics that are useful to define subgroups of patients fitting into differential treatment schemes is considered a most promising approach in cancer research. In this first study of such type, we therefore investigated the potential of multiplexed sandwich immunoassays to define protein expression profiles indicative of clinically relevant properties of malignant tumors.
Lysates prepared from large core needle biopsies of 113 invasive breast carcinomas were analyzed with bead-based miniaturized sandwich immunoassays specific for 54 preselected proteins.
Five protein concentrations [fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2), Fas, Fas ligand, tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase-1, and RANTES] were significantly different in the groups of patients with or without axillary lymph node metastasis. All 15 protein parameters that resulted in P values. (...)
We clearly showed that this approach can be used to quantify numerous proteins from breast biopsies accurately in parallel and define sets of proteins whose combined analyses allow the prediction of nodal involvement with high specificity and sensitivity.