Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Fox Chase researchers uncover new risk factors for brain metastases in breast cancer patients

10.12.2010
Early identification of women at risk might allow preventive therapy and prolong survival

Nearly one-fifth of all metastatic breast cancer patients develop brain metastases and have significantly shorter overall survival than patients who do not have brain involvement. One way to improve the affected patients' survival might be to prevent the brain metastases from arising in the first place.

With that in mind, researchers have been working on a predictive model that accurately identifies these high risk patients. Now, Veeraiah Siripurapu, M.D., and colleagues from Fox Chase Cancer Center have verified several factors––including high tumor grade, negative progesterone receptor status, and inflammatory breast cancer––that are associated with an increased risk.

"If we can identify those patients who are predisposed to brain metastases, we may be able to mirror the model used in small cell lung cancer where prophylactic cranial irradiation has decreased the frequency of brain metastases and improved patient survival," says Siripurapu, a surgical oncology fellow at Fox Chase, who will present the new data at the 33rd Annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.

In this study, Siripurapu and colleagues identified 49 patients with brain metastases who were included in a prospectively-collected database of breast cancer patients. They compared these patients with control patients who had similar tumor size, nodal status, and estrogen receptor status at diagnosis but lacked brain tumors. The patients with brain metastases had a median overall survival of just 38.6 months compared with the group of control patients which had not reached a median overall survival with a mean follow-up of 100 months.

When the team compared the tumor characteristics of the two patient groups, they found that prior non-brain metastases, high nuclear tumor grade, progesterone receptor negativity, and inflammatory breast cancer were associated with an increased risk of brain metastases in a univariate analysis with high nuclear grade remaining significant in a multivariable analysis.

"The data are accumulating in the literature with regard to what tumor characteristics are associated with brain metastases, but there is no consensus on what should be included in a model to predict risk," Siripurapu says. "Factors such as age, tumor grade, lobular or mixed histology, estrogen receptor negativity, Her2/Neu status, and number of extra-cranial metastases have all been thrown into the mix, and some investigators have suggested recently that a predictive tool can be formulated. We agree with that."

"Looking at our case-control analysis – which is a novel approach for this question – we also found that high tumor grade was certainly a marked factor in risk. Progesterone receptor negativity and a diagnosis of inflammatory breast cancer may also be valuable additions to a predictive model." Siripurapu added.

Siripurapu cautions that it is too early to say how a predictive model might alter patient care.

"At a minimum, we might be able to use it to identify patients who should be followed more closely," he says. "Ultimately, we might be able to use in a preventive treatment strategy, but that would require having a model that has higher sensitivity and specificity than we can achieve right now."

Finally, while prophylactic cranial irradiation has improved overall survival in patients with small cell lung cancer, Siripurapu is cautious that researchers would need to prove that this was also true for breast cancer patients before such an approach could be widely adopted. "The importance of piecing together a strong predictive model is that it would allow us to test the possibility in a randomized clinical trial."

Co-authors on the study include Karen Ruth, M.S.; Massimo Cristofanilli, M.D.; Brian L. Egleston, M.P.P., Ph.D.; Elin R. Sigurdson, M.D., Ph.D.; Gary M. Freedman, M.D.; Lori J. Goldstein, MD; and Richard J. Bleicher, M.D., all of Fox Chase.

Fox Chase Cancer Center is one of the leading cancer research and treatment centers in the United States. Founded in 1904 in Philadelphia as one of the nation's first cancer hospitals, Fox Chase was also among the first institutions to be designated a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center in 1974. Fox Chase researchers have won the highest awards in their fields, including two Nobel Prizes. Today, Fox Chase conducts a broad array of nationally competitive basic, translational, and clinical research, with special programs in cancer prevention, detection, survivorship, and community outreach. For more information, visit Fox Chase's Web site at www.fccc.org or call 1-888-FOX CHASE or (1-888-369-2427).

Diana Quattrone | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.fccc.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Speed data for the brain’s navigation system
06.12.2016 | Deutsches Zentrum für Neurodegenerative Erkrankungen e.V. (DZNE)

nachricht Study suggests possible new target for treating and preventing Alzheimer's
02.12.2016 | Oregon Health & Science University

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Simple processing technique could cut cost of organic PV and wearable electronics

06.12.2016 | Materials Sciences

3-D printed kidney phantoms aid nuclear medicine dosing calibration

06.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Robot on demand: Mobile machining of aircraft components with high precision

06.12.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>