The human tissue kallikreins are secreted serine proteases, encoded by a group of homologous genes clustered in tandem on chromosome 19q13.3-4. Human kallikrein 6 and human kallikrein 10 are two new members of this family. Recently, we developed highly sensitive and specific immunofluorometric assays for human kallikrein 6 and human kallikrein 10, which allow for their quantification in tissue extracts and biological fluids. Both human kallikrein 6 and human kallikrein 10 are found to be down-regulated in breast cancer cell lines, suggesting that they may be involved in breast cancer pathogenesis and progression. In this study, we investigated the potential value of human kallikrein 6 and human kallikrein 10 as prognostic and predictive factors in breast cancer. We quantified human kallikrein 6 and human kallikrein 10 protein levels in 749 breast tumour cytosolic extracts and correlated this data with various clinicopathological variables and patient outcomes. Human kallikrein 6 and human kallikrein 10 are positively correlated with each other. Higher human kallikrein 6 and human kallikrein 10 protein levels are associated with younger age, pre-menopausal, status and tumours which are negative for oestrogen and progesterone receptors. No correlation was found between human kallikrein 6 and human kallikrein 10 levels and tumour size, grade, and nodal status. Survival analysis showed that neither human kallikrein 6 nor human kallikrein 10 are related to the rate of relapse-free and overall survival. In the analysis with respect to response to tamoxifen therapy, although human kallikrein 6 levels were not associated with tamoxifen responsiveness, higher levels of human kallikrein 10 were significantly associated with a poor response rate. This association remained significant in the multivariate analysis. Furthermore, higher human kallikrein 10 levels were significantly related with a short progression-free and post-relapse overall survival after start of tamoxifen treatment for advanced disease. Taken together, our results suggest that although human kallikrein 6 and human kallikrein 10 are not prognostic markers for breast cancer, human kallikrein 10 is an independent predictive marker for response of tamoxifen therapy.

Breast cancer prognosis, Human kallikrein 10, Human kallikrein 6, Response to treatment, Survival, Tamoxifen therapy
dx.doi.org/10.1038/sj.bjc.6600323, hdl.handle.net/1765/62984
British Journal of Cancer
Department of Medical Oncology

Luo, L.-Y, Diamandis, E.P, Look, M.P, Soosaipillai, A.P, & Foekens, J.A. (2002). Higher expression of human kallikrein 10 in breast cancer tissue predicts tamoxifen resistance. British Journal of Cancer, 86(11), 1790–1796. doi:10.1038/sj.bjc.6600323