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BioMed Research International
Volume 2013, Article ID 286902, 10 pages
Research Article

Digital Microscopy Assessment of Angiogenesis in Different Breast Cancer Compartments

1Emergency Medicine Department, Gr. T. Popa University of Medicine and Pharmacy, 700115 Iasi, Romania
2Emergency Medicine Department, Saint Spiridon Hospital, 700115 Iasi, Romania
3Pathophysiology and Allergy Research Department, Medical University of Vienna, 1090 Vienna, Austria
4TissueGnostics GmbH, 1020 Vienna, Austria
5Pathology Department, County Emergency Hospital, 610136 Piatra Neamt, Romania
6Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Regional Institute of Oncology, 700483 Iasi, Romania
7Department of Anatomy, Gr. T. Popa University of Medicine and Pharmacy, 700115 Iasi, Romania
8Pathology Department, Gr. T. Popa University of Medicine and Pharmacy, 700115 Iasi, Romania

Received 10 April 2013; Accepted 29 July 2013

Academic Editor: Takahiro Hasebe

Copyright © 2013 Anca Haisan et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background/Aim. Tumour angiogenesis defined by microvessel density (MVD) is generally accepted as a prognostic factor in breast cancer. However, due to variability of measurement systems and cutoffs, it is questionable to date whether it contributes to predictive outline. Our study aims to grade vascular heterogeneity by comparing clear-cut compartments: tumour associated stroma (TAS), tumour parenchyma, and tumour invasive front. Material and Methods. Computerized vessel area measurement was performed using a tissue cytometry system (TissueFAXS) on slides originated from 50 patients with breast cancer. Vessels were marked using immunohistochemistry with CD34. Regions of interest were manually defined for each tumour compartment. Results. Tumour invasive front vascular endothelia area was 2.15 times higher than that in tumour parenchyma and 4.61 times higher than that in TAS ( ). Worth to mention that the lymph node negative subgroup of patients show a slight but constant increase of vessel index in all examined compartments of breast tumour. Conclusion. Whole slide digital examination and region of interest (ROI) analysis are a valuable tool in scoring angiogenesis markers and disclosing their prognostic capacity. Our study reveals compartments’ variability of vessel density inside the tumour and highlights the propensity of invasive front to associate an active process of angiogenesis with potential implications in adjuvant therapy.