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Table 2 Association between CTC phenotype and clinicopathological characteristics of patients with HER2-negative metastatic breast cancer

From: The prognostic and therapeutic implications of circulating tumor cell phenotype detection based on epithelial–mesenchymal transition markers in the first-line chemotherapy of HER2-negative metastatic breast cancer

Characteristic Total CTCs E + CTCs E +/M + CTCs M + CTCs EMT-CTCs
Average count Z value P value Average count Z value P value Average count Z value P value Average count Z value P value Average count Z value P value
HR status
 Positive 10.47 ± 1.56 − 1.942 0.052 1.93 ± 0.34 − 0.121 0.904 5.99 ± 1.07 − 1.687 0.092 2.70 ± 0.56 − 1.881 0.060 8.69 ± 1.42 − 2.314 0.021
 Negative 17.06 ± 4.38 1.88 ± 0.61 9.00 ± 2.64 6.19 ± 2.33 15.19 ± 3.90
Disease-free survival (months)
 < 24 15.04 ± 4.08 − 0.181 0.856 2.44 ± 0.64 − 1.148 0.251 7.81 ± 2.49 − 0.381 0.703 4.78 ± 1.49 − 0.963 0.335 12.59 ± 3.60 − 0.027 0.979
 ≥ 24 10.19 ± 1.26 1.70 ± 0.33 5.97 ± 0.95 2.70 ± 0.62 8.67 ± 1.20
Previous endocrinotherapy
 None 11.73 ± 1.77 − 0.084 0.933 1.93 ± 0.35 − 0.557 0.578 6.41 ± 1.16 − 0.681 0.496 3.55 ± 0.77 − 0.355 0.722 9.96 ± 1.62 − 0.447 0.655
 First-line or more 11.32 ± 2.83 1.89 ± 0.59 6.95 ± 1.92 2.47 ± 0.77 9.42 ± 2.45
  1. All data of cell count are expressed as mean ± standard error in 5 mL peripheral blood
  2. HR hormone receptor, DFS disease-free survival, CTCs circulating tumor cells, E + CTCs epithelial CTCs, E +/M + CTCs biphenotypic epithelial/mesenchymal CTCs, M + CTCs mesenchymal CTCs, EMT-CTCs E +/M + and M + CTCs