The significance of expression of Her2neu in squamous cell carcinoma of uterine cervix


  • Shakti Kumar Yadav Department of Pathology, North Delhi Municipal Corporation Medical College and Hindu Rao Hospital, New Delhi, India
  • Alekh Verma Department of Pathology, North Delhi Municipal Corporation Medical College and Hindu Rao Hospital, New Delhi, India
  • Sompal Singh Department of Pathology, North Delhi Municipal Corporation Medical College and Hindu Rao Hospital, New Delhi, India
  • Namrata Sarin Department of Pathology, North Delhi Municipal Corporation Medical College and Hindu Rao Hospital, New Delhi, India



Carcinoma, Cervix, ERBB2, Herceptin, Her2neu, Squamous


Background: Cervical cancer is one of the leading causes of cancer related deaths among females. It arises from precursor lesions i.e. squamous intraepithelial lesions which are closely associated with infection by HPV. The ERBB2 protooncogene encodes for a cellular transmembrane protein (erb-b2) which has tyrosine kinase activity and has been implicated in the regulation of cellular growth and proliferation in various cancers. Application of monoclonal antibodies against Her2neu has shown higher response and improved survival. The aim of the study was to evaluate the expression of Her2neu in squamous cell carcinoma of cervix in relation to tumor characteristics and to compare the expression with normal control subjects.

Methods: It was a cross-sectional analytical study. Paraffin embedded tissue blocks from 30 cases of squamous cell carcinoma were obtained from the archives. Twenty age matched cases of normal cervix removed for lesions other than that related to cervix (like leiomyoma) were taken as control. Tumour characteristics were noted from the records. Her2neu immunostaining was done. Her2neu expression was scored as positive or negative according to the American Society of Clinical Oncology and the College of American Pathologists (ASCO/CAP) scoring system for Her2neu. The Chi-square test was used to compare and find association between the variables. Student t-test was used to compare the variable between cases and controls.

Results: Her2neu was positive in 20% and negative in 80% cases of the study group. Her2neu positivity is not associated with size, histological grade and FIGO stage of the tumor. We found that all Her2neu positive cases showed no lymph node metastasis. This association between Her2neu positivity and lymph node status was statistically significant.

Conclusions: Her2neu immunoexpression is variable across various categories of squamous cell carcinoma. Her2neu positivity might be negatively associated with lymph node metastasis. However, a more comprehensive study encompassing various factors related to Her2neu overexpression is required to validate these results.


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