Prognostic influence on survival of increased ornithine decarboxylase activity in human breast cancer

Andrea Manni, David Mauger, Phyllis Gimotty, Betty Badger

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49 Scopus citations


Although considerable experimental evidence suggests an important role of polyamines in breast cancer biology, compelling supportive data in patients are lacking. To address this issue, we measured ornithine decarboxylase (ODC), S-adenosylmethionine decarboxylase, and spermidine/spermine acetyltransferase (the three key polyamine metabolic enzymes) in a cohort of 50 primary human breast cancers and related their levels of activity to disease-free survival and overall survival. The major finding of our study was that ODC activity level was a negative independent prognostic factor for both end points. With regard to overall survival, the adverse influence of ODC expression was superior even to that provided by the number of positive nodes. Furthermore, the statistical significance of the ODC effect on survival was enhanced when breast cancer-specific mortality was included in the analysis as opposed to death from any cause. In addition, high tumor ODC activity may predict a shorter time from recurrence to death, although this effect was of only borderline statistical significance. In summary, these results provide the first concrete evidence supporting the prognostic role of ODC in human breast cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1901-1906
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Cancer Research
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1996

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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