HER2 as a potential biomarker of lymph node metastasis in undifferentiated early gastric cancer
Human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) is implicated in several cancers, including gastric cancer. However, limited data are available regarding its clinical significance in early gastric cancer (EGC). We evaluated the clinical significance of HER2 overexpression in patients with EGC. We retrospectively reviewed 727 patients who underwent surgical treatment for EGC between October 2010 and August 2017. HER2 expression was analysed in 680 EGC cases by immunohistochemistry and classified
... stry and classified as negative (0 and 1+), equivocal (2+), or positive [overexpression (3+)]. Among patients with differentiated EGC, the number of patients with HER2 overexpression was not significantly different from that of HER2-negative patients in terms of age, sex, tumour size, location, gross type, depth of invasion, presence of lymphovascular invasion (LVI), and presence of lymph node metastasis (LNM). However, in patients with undifferentiated EGC, HER2 overexpression was significantly correlated with LVI and presence of LNM compared with HER2-negative patients. Multivariate analysis indicated HER2 overexpression as a good predictive marker of LNM in patients with undifferentiated EGC. HER2 expression is associated with LNM in undifferentiated EGC. Therefore, the importance of HER2 overexpression in EGC should not be overlooked, and further studies are needed to identify its clinical significance.