• Ischemia may invalidate hormone-receptor analyses. This study determined the effects of progressive ischemia on steroid hormone—receptor analyses. Breast cancer was induced in 50- to 60-day-old female Holtzman rats by intragastric administration of 25 mg of 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]antracene. After 90 days, rats were anesthetized and breast tumors were devascularized in vivo. At 0, 30, 60, 90, and 150 minutes, a biopsy specimen from each tumor was taken and rapidly frozen. Steroid binding capacity for estrogen (ER), progesterone (PR), and androgen (AR) receptors was determined by incubation with tracer receptor ligand. Ischemia decreased ER and AR levels by 30 minutes, whereas PR levels were unchanged through 150 minutes of ischemia. Following mastectomy, tylectomy, or breast biopsy, PR may be the most reliable of the hormone receptors for determining endocrineresponsive breast cancer. However, for accurate determination of all hormone receptors, specimens should be frozen in liquid nitrogen immediately, then preserved at —70°C, or processed immediately.
(Arch Surg 1989;124:39-42)