Journal Article
. 2017 Mar;67(4).
doi: 10.3322/caac.21393.

Breast Cancer-Major changes in the American Joint Committee on Cancer eighth edition cancer staging manual

Armando E Giuliano 1 James L Connolly 2 Stephen B Edge 3 Elizabeth A Mittendorf 4 Hope S Rugo 5 Lawrence J Solin 6 Donald L Weaver 7 David J Winchester 8 Gabriel N Hortobagyi 9 
  • PMID: 28294295
  •     153 citations


Answer questions and earn CME/CNE The revision of the eighth edition of the primary tumor, lymph node, and metastasis (TNM) classification of the American Joint Commission of Cancer (AJCC) for breast cancer was determined by a multidisciplinary team of breast cancer experts. The panel recognized the need to incorporate biologic factors, such as tumor grade, proliferation rate, estrogen and progesterone receptor expression, human epidermal growth factor 2 (HER2) expression, and gene expression prognostic panels into the staging system. AJCC levels of evidence and guidelines for all tumor types were followed as much as possible. The panel felt that, to maintain worldwide value, the tumor staging system should remain based on TNM anatomic factors. However, the recognition of the prognostic influence of grade, hormone receptor expression, and HER2 amplification mandated their inclusion into the staging system. The value of commercially available, gene-based assays was acknowledged and prognostic input added. Tumor biomarkers and low Oncotype DX recurrence scores can alter prognosis and stage. These updates are expected to provide additional precision and flexibility to the staging system and were based on the extent of published information and analysis of large, as yet unpublished databases. The eighth edition of the AJCC TNM staging system, thus, provides a flexible platform for prognostic classification based on traditional anatomic factors, which can be modified and enhanced using patient biomarkers and multifactorial prognostic panel data. The eighth edition remains the worldwide basis for breast cancer staging and will incorporate future online updates to remain timely and relevant. CA Cancer J Clin 2017;67:290-303. © 2017 American Cancer Society.

Keywords: biomarkers; distant metastases; ductal carcinoma in situ; estrogen receptor; human epidermal growth receptor 1 (HER2); infiltrating ductal carcinoma; infiltrating lobular carcinoma; lobular carcinoma in situ; lymph node metastases; neoadjuvant chemotherapy.

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Christina A Minami, Olga Kantor, +3 authors, Elizabeth A Mittendorf.
J Am Coll Surg, 2020 Aug 11; 231(4). PMID: 32771654    Free PMC article.
Combining node location and node ratio as a prognostic factor for surgical resected non-small cell lung cancer: a population-based study.
Huajie Xing, Mengyu Hu, +3 authors, Chaoyang Liang.
J Thorac Dis, 2020 Aug 18; 12(7). PMID: 32802434    Free PMC article.
Prognostic validation and treatment decision making of the 8th edition of the American Joint Committee on Cancer pathological staging system for elderly women with early-stage breast cancer.
San-Gang Wu, Jian Shi, +6 authors, Zhen-Yu He.
Aging (Albany NY), 2020 Jul 28; 12(14). PMID: 32710731    Free PMC article.
Silencing DSCAM-AS1 suppresses the growth and invasion of ER-positive breast cancer cells by downregulating both DCTPP1 and QPRT.
Zhang Yue, Jia Shusheng, +5 authors, Huang Yuanxi.
Aging (Albany NY), 2020 Jul 28; 12(14). PMID: 32716908    Free PMC article.
Identification of a Six-lncRNA Signature With Prognostic Value for Breast Cancer Patients.
Erjie Zhao, Yujia Lan, +5 authors, Jing Hu.
Front Genet, 2020 Aug 28; 11. PMID: 32849766    Free PMC article.
Phyto-Immunotherapy, a Complementary Therapeutic Option to Decrease Metastasis and Attack Breast Cancer Stem Cells.
Susana Fiorentino, Claudia Urueña, +2 authors, Alfonso Barreto.
Front Oncol, 2020 Aug 28; 10. PMID: 32850424    Free PMC article.
An Intelligent Decision-Making Support System for the Detection and Staging of Prostate Cancer in Developing Countries.
Jun Zhang, Zhigang Chen, Jia Wu, Kanghuai Liu.
Comput Math Methods Med, 2020 Sep 04; 2020. PMID: 32879636    Free PMC article.
The Breast Health Global Initiative 2018 Global Summit on Improving Breast Healthcare Through Resource-Stratified Phased Implementation: Methods and overview.
Catherine Duggan, Allison Dvaladze, +13 authors, Benjamin O Anderson.
Cancer, 2020 Apr 30; 126 Suppl 10. PMID: 32348573    Free PMC article.
Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) 3D printing Special Interest Group (SIG): guidelines for medical 3D printing and appropriateness for clinical scenarios.
Leonid Chepelev, Nicole Wake, +16 authors, RSNA Special Interest Group for 3D Printing.
3D Print Med, 2019 Jan 17; 4(1). PMID: 30649688    Free PMC article.
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Examination of the Biomark assay as an alternative to Oncotype DX for defining chemotherapy benefit.
Jinkyoung Kim, Aeree Kim, Chungyeul Kim.
Oncol Lett, 2019 Jan 25; 17(2). PMID: 30675242    Free PMC article.
Ginsenoside Rg3: Potential Molecular Targets and Therapeutic Indication in Metastatic Breast Cancer.
Maryam Nakhjavani, Jennifer E Hardingham, +4 authors, Amanda R Townsend.
Medicines (Basel), 2019 Jan 27; 6(1). PMID: 30678106    Free PMC article.
Analysis of Hormone Receptor Status in Primary and Recurrent Breast Cancer Via Data Mining Pathology Reports.
Kai-Po Chang, Yen-Wei Chu, John Wang.
Open Med (Wars), 2019 Mar 09; 14. PMID: 30847396    Free PMC article.
Comparison of the 7th and 8th edition of American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) staging systems for breast cancer patients: a Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) Analysis.
Nan Shao, Chuanbo Xie, +6 authors, Ying Lin.
Cancer Manag Res, 2019 Mar 14; 11. PMID: 30863154    Free PMC article.
Estrogen receptor variants in ER-positive basal-type breast cancers responding to therapy like ER-negative breast cancers.
Floris H Groenendijk, Tina Treece, +6 authors, Pat Whitworth.
NPJ Breast Cancer, 2019 Apr 25; 5. PMID: 31016233    Free PMC article.
Anatomy is not enough: the crucial role of biology and genetics in AJCC eighth edition of the TNM classification for breast cancer.
Francesca Magnoni, Giuseppe Accardo, +2 authors, Giovanni Corso.
Ann Transl Med, 2019 Apr 30; 7(Suppl 1). PMID: 31032313    Free PMC article.
The Effect of the New Eighth Edition Breast Cancer Staging System on 100 Consecutive Patients.
Ashley Biswal, Jacqueline Erler, +6 authors, Denise Johnson Miller.
J Clin Med Res, 2019 May 31; 11(6). PMID: 31143307    Free PMC article.
Should a Multigene Signature be Used in all Luminal Early Breast Cancers.
Nawale Hajjaji, Yves Marie Robin, Jacques Bonneterre.
Front Oncol, 2019 Jun 20; 9. PMID: 31214499    Free PMC article.
High expression of metabolic enzyme PFKFB4 is associated with poor prognosis of operable breast cancer.
Ling Yao, Lei Wang, +2 authors, Zhi-Ming Shao.
Cancer Cell Int, 2019 Jun 28; 19. PMID: 31244553    Free PMC article.
Validation of a Risk Score Incorporating Tumor Characteristics into the American Joint Committee on Cancer Anatomic Stage for Breast Cancer.
Yi Heng Seow, Ru Xin Wong, +3 authors, Fuh Yong Wong.
J Breast Cancer, 2019 Jul 10; 22(2). PMID: 31281728    Free PMC article.
Cytological Correlates of Axillary Nodal Involvement in Invasive Ductal Carcinoma of Breast.
Anamika Sinha, Satyajit Singh Gill.
J Cytol, 2019 Jul 31; 36(3). PMID: 31359912    Free PMC article.
Association of ki67 and tumor marker p53 in locally advanced breast cancer patients and evaluation of response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy: a survey in South Iran.
Dena Firouzabadi, Alireza Rezvani, Amirreza Dehghanian, Laleh Mahmoudi.
Cancer Manag Res, 2019 Aug 03; 11. PMID: 31372050    Free PMC article.
Comparison of GenesWell BCT Score With Oncotype DX Recurrence Score for Risk Classification in Asian Women With Hormone Receptor-Positive, HER2-Negative Early Breast Cancer.
Mi Jeong Kwon, Jeong Eon Lee, +12 authors, Young Kee Shin.
Front Oncol, 2019 Aug 14; 9. PMID: 31404265    Free PMC article.
MicroRNA-16 sensitizes drug-resistant breast cancer cells to Adriamycin by targeting Wip1 and Bcl-2.
Xitao Gao, Mei Wang, +3 authors, Jinhai Tang.
Oncol Lett, 2019 Aug 28; 18(3). PMID: 31452770    Free PMC article.
High WDR34 mRNA expression as a potential prognostic biomarker in patients with breast cancer as determined by integrated bioinformatics analysis.
Dao-Jun Hu, Wen-Jie Shi, Miao Yu, Li Zhang.
Oncol Lett, 2019 Aug 28; 18(3). PMID: 31452794    Free PMC article.
Dynamic and subtype-specific interactions between tumour burden and prognosis in breast cancer.
S B Lee, H-K Kim, +13 authors, H-G Moon.
Sci Rep, 2020 Sep 24; 10(1). PMID: 32963275    Free PMC article.
Diagnostic Performance of Indocyanine Green Plus Methylene Blue Versus Radioisotope Plus Methylene Blue Dye Method for Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy in Node-Negative Early Breast Cancer.
Sanjit Kumar Agrawal, Izideen Hashlamoun, +3 authors, Rosina Ahmed.
JCO Glob Oncol, 2020 Aug 05; 6. PMID: 32749861    Free PMC article.
The comparison of the anatomic stage and pathological prognostic stage according to the AJCC 8th edition for the prognosis in Japanese breast cancer patients: data from a single institution.
Eriko Tokunaga, Hideki Ijichi, +9 authors, Masahiro Okamoto.
Breast Cancer, 2020 May 31; 27(6). PMID: 32472474    Free PMC article.
Quantitative ultrasound radiomics using texture derivatives in prediction of treatment response to neo-adjuvant chemotherapy for locally advanced breast cancer.
Archya Dasgupta, Stephen Brade, +14 authors, Gregory J Czarnota.
Oncotarget, 2020 Nov 05; 11(42). PMID: 33144919    Free PMC article.
Triple‑negative breast cancer therapy: Current and future perspectives (Review).
Kwang-Ai Won, Charles Spruck.
Int J Oncol, 2020 Nov 12; 57(6). PMID: 33174058    Free PMC article.
Establishing a predicted model to evaluate prognosis for initially diagnosed metastatic Her2-positive breast cancer patients and exploring the benefit from local surgery.
Hong Lin, Yanxuan Wu, Guoxi Liang, Liming Chen.
PLoS One, 2020 Nov 11; 15(11). PMID: 33170907    Free PMC article.
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Sylwia Tabor, Małgorzata Szostakowska-Rodzos, Anna Fabisiewicz, Ewa A Grzybowska.
Int J Mol Sci, 2020 Nov 14; 21(21). PMID: 33182512    Free PMC article.
Combined Therapy Can Improve the Outcomes of Breast Cancer with Isolated Supraclavicular Lymph Node Involvement.
Tianyi Ma, Yan Mao, Haibo Wang.
Cancer Manag Res, 2020 Nov 27; 12. PMID: 33239916    Free PMC article.
Internal mammary sentinel lymph node biopsy with modified injection technique: A case report.
Zhao Bi, Wei-Zhen Zheng, +3 authors, Yong-Sheng Wang.
Medicine (Baltimore), 2018 Feb 01; 96(52). PMID: 29384935    Free PMC article.
Omitting Adjuvant Radiotherapy for Hormone Receptor‒Positive Early-Stage Breast Cancer in Old Age: A Propensity Score Matched SEER Analysis.
Yi-Jun Kim, Kyung Hwan Shin, Kyubo Kim.
Cancer Res Treat, 2018 May 12; 51(1). PMID: 29747486    Free PMC article.
Multifocal/Multicentric Ipsilateral Invasive Breast Carcinomas with Similar Histology: Is Multigene Testing of All Individual Foci Necessary?
Anne Grabenstetter, Edi Brogi, +4 authors, Hannah Y Wen.
Ann Surg Oncol, 2018 Oct 10; 26(2). PMID: 30298311    Free PMC article.
Validation of the pathological prognostic staging system proposed in the revised eighth edition of the AJCC staging manual in different molecular subtypes of breast cancer.
Nuri Jang, Jung Eun Choi, Su Hwan Kang, Young Kyung Bae.
Virchows Arch, 2018 Nov 27; 474(2). PMID: 30474738
Next-generation sequencing-based clinical sequencing: toward precision medicine in solid tumors.
Toshifumi Wakai, Pankaj Prasoon, +3 authors, Masayuki Nagahashi.
Int J Clin Oncol, 2018 Dec 06; 24(2). PMID: 30515675
Meta-analysis of the likelihood of FOXC1 expression in early- and late-stage tumors.
Tsutomu Kume, Tarek Shackour.
Oncotarget, 2018 Dec 20; 9(93). PMID: 30564302    Free PMC article.
The composition of T cell infiltrates varies in primary invasive breast cancer of different molecular subtypes as well as according to tumor size and nodal status.
Anna Glajcar, Joanna Szpor, +2 authors, Krzysztof Okoń.
Virchows Arch, 2019 Apr 25; 475(1). PMID: 31016433    Free PMC article.
Performance of a new system using a one-step nucleic acid amplification assay for detecting lymph node metastases in breast cancer.
Kenzo Shimazu, Tomonori Tanei, +7 authors, Shinzaburo Noguchi.
Med Oncol, 2019 May 08; 36(6). PMID: 31062258
First Intraoperative Radiation Therapy Center in Africa: First 2 Years in Operation, Including COVID-19 Experiences.
Yastira Ramdas, Carol-Ann Benn, Michelle van Heerden.
JCO Glob Oncol, 2020 Nov 07; 6. PMID: 33156717    Free PMC article.
Mechanisms of Resistance to Chemotherapy in Breast Cancer and Possible Targets in Drug Delivery Systems.
Patrícia de Faria Lainetti, Antonio Fernando Leis-Filho, +2 authors, Carlos Eduardo Fonseca-Alves.
Pharmaceutics, 2020 Dec 16; 12(12). PMID: 33316872    Free PMC article.
Prognostic and Predictive Value of the American Joint Committee on Cancer Pathological Prognostic Staging System in Nodal Micrometastatic Breast Cancer.
Jian Shi, Chen-Lu Lian, +6 authors, San-Gang Wu.
Front Oncol, 2021 Jan 05; 10. PMID: 33392071    Free PMC article.
Predictive Value of CD44 for Prognosis in Patients with Breast Cancer.
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Asian Pac J Cancer Prev, 2020 Sep 29; 21(9). PMID: 32986353    Free PMC article.
Factors That Predict Biological Aggressiveness in Estrogen Receptor-Positive / Human Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor 2-Negative / Lymph Node-Negative Breast Cancer.
Lauren E Arthur, Ashley H McMann, +4 authors, Ralph L Corsetti.
Ochsner J, 2021 Jan 08; 20(4). PMID: 33408575    Free PMC article.
Chip-Scale Angle-Selective Imager for In Vivo Microscopic Cancer Detection.
Efthymios P Papageorgiou, Bernhard E Boser, Mekhail Anwar.
IEEE Trans Biomed Circuits Syst, 2019 Dec 14; 14(1). PMID: 31831434    Free PMC article.
A Novel Staging System for De Novo Metastatic Breast Cancer Refines Prognostic Estimates.
Jennifer K Plichta, Samantha M Thomas, +7 authors, E Shelley Hwang.
Ann Surg, 2020 Jul 14;. PMID: 32657941    Free PMC article.
Prognostic and predictive parameters in breast pathology: a pathologist's primer.
Kimberly H Allison.
Mod Pathol, 2020 Nov 07; 34(Suppl 1). PMID: 33154551
SOX12 expression is associated with progression and poor prognosis in human breast cancer.
Junming Xu, Jinyan Zhang, +3 authors, Yang Li.
Am J Transl Res, 2021 Jan 14; 12(12). PMID: 33437389    Free PMC article.
Staging for Breast Cancer With Internal Mammary Lymph Nodes Metastasis: Utility of Incorporating Biologic Factors.
Chen-Lu Lian, Hai-Yan Zhang, +4 authors, San-Gang Wu.
Front Oncol, 2021 Feb 02; 10. PMID: 33520700    Free PMC article.
Combined analysis of miR-200 family and its significance for breast cancer.
Andrea Fontana, Raffaela Barbano, +16 authors, Paola Parrella.
Sci Rep, 2021 Feb 05; 11(1). PMID: 33536459    Free PMC article.
Concordance between results of inexpensive statistical models and multigene signatures in patients with ER+/HER2- early breast cancer.
Laurence Slembrouck, Isabelle Vanden Bempt, +12 authors, Giuseppe Floris.
Mod Pathol, 2021 Feb 10;. PMID: 33558657
Targeting the purinergic pathway in breast cancer and its therapeutic applications.
Julia Beatrice de Araújo, Vanessa Vitória Kerkhoff, Sarah Franco Vieira de Oliveira Maciel, Débora Tavares de Resende E Silva.
Purinergic Signal, 2021 Feb 13;. PMID: 33576905    Free PMC article.