Detection of breast cancer from blood through analysis of lymphocyte fluorescent intensity using MUC1 antigen

Ayelet Armon-Omer, Amram Hadary, Georgette Hilu, Bat el Tayar, Tali Keren, Adi Sharabi-Nov, Amitai Bickel, Ofer Klein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Sensitive and reliable early diagnostic markers for breast cancer (BC) are still unavailable today. In this work, we proposed a new complementary method for detection of BC. This method is based on an observation that lymphocytes re-exposed in vitro to antigenic stimulation express cytoplasmic changes. Methods: In the new protocol, we recorded changes in the fluorescence intensity of light emitted from lymphocytes obtained from females with and without BC after stimulation with MUC1 antigen utilized flow cytometry. Results: Out of 55 BC patients tested, 46 were correctly diagnosed. Of 73 controls, 55 were correctly identified as healthy subjects. The sensitivity of the test was 84 %; the specificity was 75 %. Conclusion: These results suggest a potentially valuable method for detection of BC. The clinical importance of this procedure relies on the ability to screen populations for BC with widely available flow cytometry by a relatively fast, accurate, and economical procedure. Another potential benefit would be identification of candidates for vaccination as a primary or secondary preventive measure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)626-633
Number of pages8
JournalBreast Cancer
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014, The Japanese Breast Cancer Society.


  • Breast
  • Cancer
  • Flow cytometry
  • Lymphocyte
  • MUC1


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