This study aimed to evaluate the biological and clinical significance of apelin-36 in breast cancer and to compare apelin-36 expression and apoptotic index in both breast tissue and metastatic lymph nodes in patients with invasive breast carcinoma. In this study, both tumor tissue and metastatic lymph nodes of the same patient were collected from 60 cases of invasive breast carcinoma patients (IDC, ILC) and 20 cases of normal breast tissue with no tumor from mammoplasty were used as the control group. The expression of apelin was examined with immunohistochemically, and the apoptotic index was examined with TUNEL methods. According to Kruskal-Wallis analysis, there was a significant difference between IDC and the control group when the apelin expression was compared between the breast tissues (p = 0.001). There were significant differences between the three groups when comparing relationships with apoptotic index (p < 0.001). According to the Mann-Whitney U test, both tumor size and expression of apelin in lymph nodes in ILCs were significantly higher than IDCs. (p = 0.026, p = 0.024, respectively). According to correlation analysis, there was a good correlation between the expression of apelin in breast tissue and apelin expression in lymph nodes (p = 0.000). It is also found a similar relationship in terms of the apoptotic index (p = 0.000). In addition, the negative correlation was found between apelin expression and the apoptotic index in breast tissues (p = 0.003). Based on these results, apelin-36 can be used as a marker for determining the metastasis potential in invasive breast cancer.