Recent studies have identified the apolipoprotein B mRNA-editing enzyme catalytic polypeptide-like 3B (APOBEC3B) as a source of mutations in various malignancies. APO-BEC3B is overexpressed in several human cancer types, including breast cancer. In this study, we analyzed APOBEC3B mRNA expression in 305 primary breast cancers of Japanese women using quantitative reverse transcription-PCR, and investigated the relationships between the APOBEC3B mRNA expression and clinicopathological characteristics, prognosis, and TP53 mutations. The expression of APOBEC3B mRNA was detected in 277 tumors and not detected in 28 tumors. High APOBEC3B mRNA expression was significantly correlated with ER- and PR-negativity, high grade and high Ki67 index. The APOBEC3B mRNA expression was highest in the triple-negative and lowest in the hormone receptorpositive/HER2-negative subtypes. The TP53 gene was more frequently mutated in the tumors with high APOBEC3B mRNA expression. High APOBEC3B mRNA expression was significantly associated with poor recurrence-free survival in all cases and the ER-positive cases. These findings were almost consistent with the previous reports from the Western countries. In conclusion, high APOBEC3B mRNA expression was related to the aggressive phenotypes of breast cancer, high frequency of TP53 mutation and poor prognosis, especially in ER-positive tumors.
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