Mammary tumors are among the most common neoplasms in intact female dogs. They have a complex morphology, usually affecting middle age and older bitches. Almost 50% of the mammary tumors in dogs are malignant neoplasms. Prognosis is based on several factors: stage, age, tumor size, metastasis, histopathology, ovariectomy status and hormone-receptor activity. Immunohistochemical (IHC) measurement has become increasingly an important diagnostic and prognostic parameter, with the development of monoclonal antibodies against nuclear estrogen and progestin receptors. The aim of this study was to detect the presence of ER receptors in malignant canine mammary tumors and to identify their association with the clinical course of the tumor. Mammary tumor samples have been obtained by mastectomy from dogs presented at our clinic. Detailed clinical examination, CBC and basic serum biochemical profile were performed in all patients. Surgery was the only treatment. Histopathological examination and immunohistochemical detection of estrogen α receptors (ERα) was performed on 8 formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded tissue samples, using the PT LINK immunoperoxidase technique. Histopathological examination of the mammary tumor samples (n=11) revealed tubular adenocarcinoma (n=6,54.5%) and ductal adenocarcinoma (n=3, 27.3%), one patient with benign adenoma and one with mastitis. Patients with positive ER tumors are alive, without remission, while 3 of the patients that were ER negative died due to lung metastases. According to our results, it can be concluded that the appearance and development of canine mammary tumors is highly connected with ovarian steroid hormones and that immunostaining of the tumors may be used as a good prognostic parameter in these patients.
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