Invasive Ductular Carcinoma in 2 Rhesus Macaques (Macaca mulatta)

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In the United States, breast cancer is the most common malignancy among women, with an estimated lifetime incidence of approximately 12% in American women. Invasive ductal carcinoma is the most common form of breast cancer in women, accounting for approximately 60% of all breast carcinomas. Prognostic markers are used to assess aggressiveness, invasiveness, and extent of spread of a neoplasm and thus may be correlated with patient survival. Immunohistochemistry is currently widely used for this purpose, with a variety of prognostication markers available. Classic markers for breast cancer in women include estrogen and progesterone receptor steroid hormone proteins and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2. Many additional markers have been used in diagnosis and prognostication, including p53, p63, and E-cadherin and cell proliferation markers such as Ki67. Despite an estimated lifetime incidence of approximately 6.1%, naturally occurring mammary neoplasms in nonhuman primates are uncommonly reported, with only sporadic references over the past 75 y. The majority of reported tumors occur in rhesus macaques, although this prevalence has been suggested to be a consequence of their high frequency of usage in biomedical research. Here we present 2 cases of mammary carcinoma in adult female intact rhesus macaques, with cytology, histopathology, and extensive immunohistochemical analysis. According to current classifications for human breast tumors, both tumors were classified as invasive ductal carcinoma. The prognostic value of immunohistochemical markers in human breast cancer and in reported cases in nonhuman primates is discussed.

Appeared or available online: July 31, 2014

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