Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Way Of Examining Lymph Tissue Detects Hidden Melanoma

Date:
October 1, 2003
Source:
American Society Of Clinical Oncology
Summary:
A new study shows that molecular analysis of a very small tissue sample can identify hidden melanoma metastases in lymph nodes. The presence of melanoma in the lymph nodes is the single most important factor in determining a patient's prognosis and is a key factor in determining a patient's course of treatment.

A new study shows that molecular analysis of a very small tissue sample can identify hidden melanoma metastases in lymph nodes. The presence of melanoma in the lymph nodes is the single most important factor in determining a patient's prognosis and is a key factor in determining a patient's course of treatment.

Related Articles


Published in the October 1 issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology, the study is the first to use such a thin section of archival paraffin-embedded tissue and show that a specific set of molecular characteristics indicates the presence of melanoma in the lymph nodes – even among patients whose lymph nodes appear cancer-free using standard techniques. By using a small tissue section, pathologists spare more of the whole specimen, which is needed for additional pathology tests.

"Our findings show that by performing molecular analysis on a very small piece of tissue, we can quickly and accurately identify previously undetectable metastases, and provide a more accurate prognosis for patients," said Dr. Dave S.B. Hoon, director of the Department of Molecular Oncology at the John Wayne Cancer Institute in Santa Monica, California, and senior author of the study. "Providing a more accurate prognosis can inform decisions on when and how to treat patients, and could ultimately improve our ability to care for patients with melanoma."

Dr. Hoon and his team designed a molecular test to detect the presence of four melanoma-associated proteins, or "markers," in lymph node tissue. They obtained archived tissue samples from 77 patients. Standard tests revealed that 37 of the samples contained melanoma, indicating a poor prognosis. However, using the new molecular analysis, researchers showed that the lymph nodes of 25 percent of the 40 patients whose nodes were thought to be cancer-free actually contained two or more of the melanoma-associated markers.

Researchers then observed all patients for nearly five years to determine if there was any correlation between the number or type of melanoma markers and patients' clinical outcomes. They found that patients with two or more of the markers were more than twice as likely to develop a recurrence of their disease than patients whose lymph node samples presented zero or one marker, and were nearly five-times as likely to die as a result of recurrence.

"Our study is the first to show that patients who express these specific melanoma markers are much more likely to have a poorer outcome, which has wide-ranging implications for the type and extent of treatment that they receive," said Dr. Hoon. "In addition, we are able to identify these patients using a previously-archived tissue sample, sparing the remainder of the valuable whole tissue specimen for other tests."

Dr. Hoon and his colleagues are in the process of enrolling patients in larger clinical trials that will examine the use of these and other markers to better detect melanoma in the lymph nodes, which could dramatically improve the accuracy of diagnosis and identify patients who would benefit from stringent monitoring and preventive therapy.

###

"Prediction of Disease Outcome in Melanoma Patients by Molecular Analysis of Paraffin-Embedded Sentinel Lymph Nodes." Christine Kuo, M.D. et al.; John Wayne Cancer Institute, St. John's Health Center, Santa Monica, CA. Vol 21, No 19 (October 1), 2003, pp 3566-3572.

The Journal of Clinical Oncology is the semi-monthly peer-reviewed journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), the world's leading professional society representing physicians who treat people with cancer.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Society Of Clinical Oncology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Society Of Clinical Oncology. "New Way Of Examining Lymph Tissue Detects Hidden Melanoma." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 October 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/10/031001062245.htm>.
American Society Of Clinical Oncology. (2003, October 1). New Way Of Examining Lymph Tissue Detects Hidden Melanoma. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/10/031001062245.htm
American Society Of Clinical Oncology. "New Way Of Examining Lymph Tissue Detects Hidden Melanoma." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/10/031001062245.htm (accessed November 28, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, November 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

AFP (Nov. 27, 2014) — The Ebola epidemic sweeping Sierra Leone is having a profound effect on the country's children, many of whom have been left without any family members to support them. Duration: 01:02 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Experimental Ebola Vaccine Shows Promise In Human Trial

Experimental Ebola Vaccine Shows Promise In Human Trial

Newsy (Nov. 27, 2014) — A recent test of a prototype Ebola vaccine generated an immune response to the disease in subjects. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) — Researchers in the United States are preparing to discover whether a drug commonly used in human organ transplants can extend the lifespan and health quality of pet dogs. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Newsy (Nov. 26, 2014) — Advances in prosthetics are making replacement body parts stronger and more lifelike than they’ve ever been. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins