Medline ® Abstract for Reference 8
Histomorphometric evidence for osteoclast-mediated bone resorption in metastatic breast cancer.
Taube T, Elomaa I, Blomqvist C, Beneton MN, Kanis JA
We studied bone biopsies from 65 normocalcaemic women with breast cancer and predominantly osteolytic bone metastases in order to examine the pathophysiology of bone destruction in metastatic bone disease. Quantitative histomorphometric measurements were made at sites of tumour involvement, at sites adjacent to tumour tissue and at sites distant from tumour tissue. There were no significant differences in bone volume or in indices of bone resorption or formation between biopsies taken from sites distant from tumour and the controls. Bone resorption, as judged by eroded surface, increased progressively from bone distant from tumour to tumour-laden bone. The number of osteoclasts was significantly increased in bone immediately adjacent to tumour and within metastases. There was no decrease in the ratio of osteoclast to eroded surface in breast cancer compared to controls suggesting that increased resorption in breast cancer was mainly osteoclast mediated and locally activated by the tumour. Two thirds of the biopsies taken from tumour involved regions showed osteosclerosis with woven bone formation. The volume of the pre-existing lamellar trabecular bone was lower than normal in 75% of these biopsies, suggesting that bone resorption must have been increased before the onset of woven bone formation. Since all patients were receiving hormonal treatment or chemotherapy, it is likely that osteosclerosis at sites of previous resorption mainly resulted from the basic cancer treatment as a sign of response to treatment. Osteoclastic bone resorption was, however, not completely inhibited by the active cancer treatment.
Department of Radiotherapy and Oncology, Helsinki University Central Hospital, Finland.