The most commonly diagnosed malignancy in women, it is said that breast cancer (BC) will affect one in eight women at some point in their lives. Approximately 10-20% of these tumors will be immunohistochemically classified as triple negative (triple negative breast cancer; TNBC), meaning they lack therapeutically relevant expression of estrogen and progesterone receptors (< 1% positive tumor cells) and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2; Score < 3) gene amplification. TN tumors are highly heterogeneous, but tend to be fast growing and clinically aggressive. As of yet, there are no targeted therapies for TNBC. The general prognosis for TNBC is poorer than that of the other BC subtypes; despite its accounting for a relatively low proportion of overall BC diagnoses, approximately 25% of all BC fatalities are attributed to the TN subtype.
Students will be provided with an anonymized dataset from a retrospective cohort of TNBC patients treated at Pius Hospital between 01/2008 to 12/2017. Using this dataset, various analyses may be performed to explore the effects of established risk factors (i.e. as parity, body composition, comorbidities, etc.), therapeutic strategies (i.e. neoadjuvant vs. adjuvant CTX, surgical approach, etc.), and/or tumor characteristics (i.e. disease stage, proliferation markers, grade, etc.) on oncological outcomes (i.e. recurrence rate, 5-year survival, overall survival, etc.).
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