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!
Seeing on the Quick: New Insights into Active Vision in the Brain
15.08.2018 | Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen
New Approach to Treating Chronic Itch
15.08.2018 | Universität Zürich
Scientists at the University of California, Los Angeles present new research on a curious cosmic phenomenon known as "whistlers" -- very low frequency packets...
Scientists develop first tool to use machine learning methods to compute flow around interactively designable 3D objects. Tool will be presented at this year’s prestigious SIGGRAPH conference.
When engineers or designers want to test the aerodynamic properties of the newly designed shape of a car, airplane, or other object, they would normally model...
Researchers from TU Graz and their industry partners have unveiled a world first: the prototype of a robot-controlled, high-speed combined charging system (CCS) for electric vehicles that enables series charging of cars in various parking positions.
Global demand for electric vehicles is forecast to rise sharply: by 2025, the number of new vehicle registrations is expected to reach 25 million per year....
Proteins must be folded correctly to fulfill their molecular functions in cells. Molecular assistants called chaperones help proteins exploit their inbuilt folding potential and reach the correct three-dimensional structure. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry (MPIB) have demonstrated that actin, the most abundant protein in higher developed cells, does not have the inbuilt potential to fold and instead requires special assistance to fold into its active state. The chaperone TRiC uses a previously undescribed mechanism to perform actin folding. The study was recently published in the journal Cell.
Actin is the most abundant protein in highly developed cells and has diverse functions in processes like cell stabilization, cell division and muscle...
Scientists have discovered that the electrical resistance of a copper-oxide compound depends on the magnetic field in a very unusual way -- a finding that could help direct the search for materials that can perfectly conduct electricity at room temperatur
What happens when really powerful magnets--capable of producing magnetic fields nearly two million times stronger than Earth's--are applied to materials that...
08.08.2018 | Event News
27.07.2018 | Event News
25.07.2018 | Event News
15.08.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
15.08.2018 | Earth Sciences
15.08.2018 | Physics and Astronomy