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Mammary mucinous cystadenocarcinoma (MCA) is a rare, invasive ductal carcinoma (IDC) of the breast that is virtually identical morphologically to MCA of the ovary, pancreas or appendix. Synchronous bilateral breast tumors, not uncommonly encountered in fibroadenoma and lobular carcinoma, are unusual in IDC. Reported herein is a primary MCA of the right breast coexisting with a bilateral ordinary IDC in a 55-year-old Taiwanese woman who underwent modified radical mastectomy of both breasts with bilateral axillary level I and II lymph node dissection. In the right breast a 2.5 cm unilocular mucus-filled cyst was found. It had complex papillae, some of which were supported by delicate fibrovascular stroma, lined by simple to slightly stratified columnar neoplastic epithelial cells with intracellular mucin and an abundance of intracystic extracellular mucin, coexisting with a low-grade ordinary IDC. In the left breast a high-grade ordinary IDC was discovered. The patient had undergone simple abdominal total hysterectomy for myoma uteri along with bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy 10 years previously. Based on pathological studies and a literature review, it is suggested that mammary MCA arises from mucinous metaplasia and macrocystic transformation of ordinary breast carcinoma. A brief discussion of bilateral breast cancers is also given.

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Four unusual cases of primary mammary mucinous cystadenocarcinoma composed predominantly of tall columnar cells with abundant intracytoplasmic mucin are reported; they were multicystic and appeared virtually identical to mucinous cystadenocarcinomas of the ovary and pancreas. Three of the women were white and one was black, they ranged in age from 49 to 67 years (average 58), and they had tumors that ranged from 0.8 to 19 cm in diameter. Microscopically, the tumors were characterized by cystic spaces lined by predominantly bland-appearing columnar mucinous cells with stratification, tufting, and papillary formations. Varying degrees of cytologic atypia were focally evident, with gradual loss of the intracytoplasmic mucin and transformation to an eosinophilic squamoid cell population. Multifocal invasion generally emanated from these eosinophilic, squamoid areas in all cases. All four tumors displayed immunoreactivity for MIB-1 (Ki-67) in a relatively high percentage of cells and failed to show immunoreactivity for estrogen receptors and progesterone receptors. All four stained positively with cytokeratin 7 (CK7) but were negative with cytokeratin 20 (CK20). Mastectomy and axillary lymph node dissection were performed in three cases and lumpectomy with lymph node dissection in the remaining case. Lymph node metastases, identified in only one patient, retained the distinctive morphology. Three of the patients are alive without evidence of disease 11, 22, and 24 months after the diagnosis; the fourth is a recent case. These tumors are a rare, clinicopathologically distinct type of primary breast carcinoma that should be distinguished from typical mucinous (colloid) carcinomas of the breast and, more importantly, metastases from other sites.

Background Mucins are heavily O-glycosylated proteins where the glycosylation has been shown to play an important role in cancer. Normal epithelial ovarian cells do not express secreted mucins, but their abnormal expression has previously been described in epithelial ovarian cancer and may relate to tumor formation and progression. The cyst fluids were shown to be a rich source for acidic glycoproteins. The study of these proteins can potentially lead to the identification of more effective biomarkers for ovarian cancer. Methods In this study, we analyzed the expression of the MUC5AC and the O-glycosylation of acidic glycoproteins secreted into ovarian cyst fluids. The samples were obtained from patients with serous and mucinous ovarian tumors of different stages (benign, borderline, malignant) and grades. The O-linked oligosaccharides were released and analyzed by negative-ion graphitized carbon Liquid Chromatography (LC) coupled to Electrospray Ionization tandem Mass Spectrometry (ESI-MSn). The LC-ESI-MSn of the oligosaccharides from ovarian cyst fluids displayed differences in expression of fucose containing structures such as blood group ABO antigens and Lewis-type epitopes. Results The obtained data showed that serous and mucinous benign adenomas, mucinous low malignant potential carcinomas (LMPs, borderline) and mucinous low-grade carcinomas have a high level of blood groups and Lewis type epitopes. In contrast, this type of fucosylated structures were low abundant in the high-grade mucinous carcinomas or in serous carcinomas. In addition, the ovarian tumors that showed a h