BACKGROUND: Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) gene copy number has been proposed as predictor of response to epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors in advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).METHODS: Cytologic and matched histologic samples from 33 primary non-small cell lung cancers were analyzed by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) for epidermal growth factor receptor gene.RESULTS: FISH was positive in 52% and negative in 35% of the 31 matched evaluable samples. Four of 31 (13%) cases were discordant (K = 0.736; p < 0.001).CONCLUSION: Our data support the feasibility and reliability of epidermal growth factor receptor gene assessment by FISH on cytology.
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