Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers discover that lymphocyte count indicates prognosis of patients with renal cell carcinoma

19.05.2011
Results suggest that lymphocyte count could factor into doctors' treatment decisions

Each year, kidney cancer is diagnosed in nearly 60,000 people in the U.S. Many of these patients undergo surgery to remove the affected kidney, but this procedure can be risky for the elderly and those who have other health problems.

Unfortunately, the prognosis of kidney cancer patients often cannot be determined until tumor samples are surgically removed and evaluated. Now, researchers at Fox Chase Cancer Center have discovered that the lymphocyte count––which is routinely measured in laboratory tests––is a simple and effective prognostic indicator in patients with renal cell carcinoma (RCC).

Sunil Saroha, MD, medical oncology fellow at Fox Chase and lead author on the study, will be presenting the findings at the 2011 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology on Sunday, June 5.

"There has been this need for looking at prognostic markers that are available prior to surgical procedures," says Saroha. "It would be nice to know before the surgery if the tumor is going to be aggressive and how aggressive we need to be, with the goal of individualizing therapies."

The level of lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell, was one possible prognostic indicator considered by Saroha, Tahseen Al-Saleem, MD, a cancer pathologist at Fox Chase, and their colleagues. RCC patients generally have a worse prognosis if they have a suppressed immune system, which is indicated by low lymphocyte levels.

By evaluating data from more than 500 patients with the most common form of RCC—called clear cell RCC—who had their kidneys surgically removed at Fox Chase between 1994 and 2009, Al-Saleem and his colleagues found a clear relationship between low lymphocyte counts within three months prior to surgery and a poor prognosis.

The researchers found that lower lymphocyte levels were associated with a higher tumor grade, a higher pathologic tumor stage, the presence of distant metastases, and a higher TNM stage—a combined indicator of tumor stage, spread to regional lymph nodes, and distant metastasis. They also found that low counts were associated with a lower overall survival rate, even when they accounted for patient age, tumor stage and metastasis.

Although these findings should be explored further in prospective research studies, the researchers suggest that the lymphocyte count could factor into doctors' treatment decisions. "This simple test can really help us identify patients at the outset who are at risk of very aggressive disease and who may not do well with current therapies," Saroha says. For example, if a young RCC patient has a low lymphocyte count but is otherwise healthy, a doctor may decide to pursue more aggressive therapies, such as surgery and chemotherapy.

"On the other hand, the test may also identify patients who may not need as aggressive therapies as usual," Saroha adds. For example, about half of RCC patients are over 60 years old, and if one of these patients has other health problems and a normal lymphocyte count, a doctor may decide to monitor the patient rather than perform surgery. "The test may help individualize therapies, change clinical decisions and add therapies before or after the surgery," Saroha says.

Saroha also emphasizes the need for more studies that focus on only one subtype of RCC, as in this study. Previous studies have clumped together different subtypes of RCC patients, even though there could be significant differences between them.

Co-authors on the study include Robert Uzzo, Gary Hudes, Elizabeth Plimack, and Karen Ruth from 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. Fox Chase physicians are also routinely recognized in national rankings, and the Center's nursing program has received the Magnet status for excellence three consecutive times. 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 NIST scientists discover how to switch liver cancer cell growth from 2-D to 3-D structures
17.11.2017 | National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

nachricht High speed video recording precisely measures blood cell velocity
15.11.2017 | ITMO 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: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

Im Focus: Researchers Develop Data Bus for Quantum Computer

The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...

Im Focus: Wrinkles give heat a jolt in pillared graphene

Rice University researchers test 3-D carbon nanostructures' thermal transport abilities

Pillared graphene would transfer heat better if the theoretical material had a few asymmetric junctions that caused wrinkles, according to Rice University...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA detects solar flare pulses at Sun and Earth

17.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

NIST scientists discover how to switch liver cancer cell growth from 2-D to 3-D structures

17.11.2017 | Health and Medicine

The importance of biodiversity in forests could increase due to climate change

17.11.2017 | Studies and Analyses

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>