High levels of circulating DNA may indicate faster progression of lung cancer and lower overall survival, according to a study published in the February edition of the Journal of Thoracic Oncology, the official publication of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC).
"Thirty-three years ago it was demonstrated that cancer patients presented more free DNA in the blood than healthy people, and further investigations confirmed that much of the circulating DNA in the patients with cancer derives from the tumor," said Rafael Sirera, an associate professor of immunology at the Polytechnic University of Valencia in Valencia, Spain. "Although circulating DNA in established cancers demonstrated a strong power to discriminate patients with lung cancer from those with benign lung diseases or healthy individuals, several critical voices were raised against its relevance for screening and diagnostics."
The study analyzed blood samples from 446 patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer, all of whom were enrolled in a multicenter clinical trial of the Spanish Lung Cancer Group between February 2003 and January 2005. Levels of free human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT), as a surrogate of circulating DNA, were determined before the planned start of combination chemotherapy with cisplatin and docetaxel.
Patients with hTERT levels below 49.8 nanograms per milliliter (ng/ml) had a median time to progression (TTP) of 6.3 months, compared with 4.9 months for patients with hTERT of more than 49.8 ng/ml.
In addition, patients with the lower hTERT levels had higher overall survival, at 10.9 months versus 9.3 months for patients with higher hTERT.
A key strength of the study was its larger population size, compared with similar studies that included fewer than 100 patients.
"The standardization of sample source, processing, DNA extraction and titration methods gives a strong reliability to our results," Sirera said. "Another important aspect that should be emphasized is that the DNA concentrations in our study did not seem to be influenced by either pretreatment tumor characteristics or clinical variables."
Because hTERT analysis depends on a simple, noninvasive and affordable procedure that can be performed in sequential samples from the same patient, it could be an important aid in therapy evaluations and follow-up of patients with non-small cell lung cancer, Sirera said.
The study was supported in part by the Spanish Society of Medical Oncology.
About the Journal of Thoracic Oncology:
The Journal of Thoracic Oncology (JTO) is the official monthly journal of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC). It is a prized resource for medical specialists and scientists who focus on the detection, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of lung cancer. It emphasizes a multidisciplinary approach, including original research (clinical trials and translational or basic research), reviews and opinion pieces.
To find out more about the JTO please visit journals.lww.com. To learn more about the IASLC please visit iaslc.org.
Renée McGaw | EurekAlert!
Building a brain, cell by cell: Researchers make a mini neuron network (of two)
23.05.2018 | Institute of Industrial Science, The University of Tokyo
Research reveals how order first appears in liquid crystals
23.05.2018 | Brown University
At the LASYS 2018, from June 5th to 7th, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) will be showcasing processes for the laser material processing of tomorrow in hall 4 at stand 4E75. With blown bomb shells the LZH will present first results of a research project on civil security.
At this year's LASYS, the LZH will exhibit light-based processes such as cutting, welding, ablation and structuring as well as additive manufacturing for...
There are videos on the internet that can make one marvel at technology. For example, a smartphone is casually bent around the arm or a thin-film display is rolled in all directions and with almost every diameter. From the user's point of view, this looks fantastic. From a professional point of view, however, the question arises: Is that already possible?
At Display Week 2018, scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research IAP will be demonstrating today’s technological possibilities and...
So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics
Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...
The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...
A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.
The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...
02.05.2018 | Event News
13.04.2018 | Event News
12.04.2018 | Event News
23.05.2018 | Life Sciences
23.05.2018 | Life Sciences
23.05.2018 | Physics and Astronomy