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Veterinary Medicine International
Volume 2012, Article ID 687424, 7 pages
Research Article

P-Cadherin Expression in Feline Mammary Tissues

1Escola Universitária Vasco da Gama (EUVG), Quinta de S. Jorge, Estrada da Conraria, Castelo Viegas, 3040-714 Coimbra, Portugal
2Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas Abel Salazar, Universidade do Porto (ICBAS-UP), Rua de Jorge Viterbo Ferreira No. 228, 4050-313 Porto, Portugal
3Instituto Português de Oncologia de Coimbra Francisco Gentil, EPE (IPOCFG,EPE) Avenida Bissaya Barreto, No. 98, 3000-075 Coimbra, Portugal
4Instituto de Patologia e Imunologia Molecular da Universidade do Porto (IPATIMUP), Rua Dr Roberto Frias s/n, 4200-465 Porto, Portugal

Received 17 April 2012; Accepted 13 August 2012

Academic Editor: Giuliano Bettini

Copyright © 2012 Ana Catarina Figueira 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.


The search for molecular markers in the feline mammary gland, namely, the adhesion molecules belonging to the cadherin family, is useful in the understanding of the development of mammary carcinomas in felines and humans. To study P-cadherin expression in the feline mammary gland, 61 samples of normal ( ), hyperplastic ( ), and neoplastic ( ) feline mammary tissues were examined. In both normal and hyperplastic mammary tissues as well as in benign tumours, P-cadherin immunolabelling was restricted to myoepithelial cells. In malignant tumours, however, there was an aberrant epithelial P-cadherin immunoexpression in 64.1% ( ) of cases, with a membranous and/or cytoplasmic pattern of distribution. A statistically significant relationship was seen between epithelial P-cadherin expression and malignant mammary lesions ( ). In malignant mammary tumours, there was likewise a statistically significant relationship between aberrant P-cadherin immunoexpression and histological grade ( ). Aberrant epithelial P-cadherin expression seems to be related to malignancy in the feline mammary gland. To confirm the results of this investigation, further studies with larger samples and follow-up studies are warranted.