Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Researchers link genetic marker to rectal cancer treatment

Date:
July 6, 2011
Source:
University of Southern California
Summary:
A team of researchers has identified a genetic marker that may predict which patients with rectal cancer can be cured by certain chemotherapies when combined with surgery. The discovery brings doctors closer to customizing cancer treatment to individual patients.

A team of researchers led by Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California (USC) oncologist Heinz-Josef Lenz, M.D., has identified a genetic marker that may predict which patients with rectal cancer can be cured by certain chemotherapies when combined with surgery. The discovery, scheduled for publication in the August 1 edition of Clinical Cancer Research, brings doctors closer to customizing cancer treatment to individual patients.

Lenz, professor of medicine and preventive medicine in the division of medical oncology at the Keck School and the study's principal investigator, analyzed the DNA of European patients with locally advanced rectal cancer who were treated with cetuximab (marketed as Erbitux) prior to surgery.

"Cetuximab is usually used for metastatic colon cancer, for which it is effective. We're asking if it could be effective for locally advanced rectal cancer," said Lenz, associate director of the Gastrointestinal Oncology Program at the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center and Hospital.

Colorectal cancer is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer and the third leading cause of cancer death among men and women in the United States, according to the American Cancer Society. The disease develops in the colon or rectum and, if detected in its early stages, usually can be completely removed by surgery. When it is locally advanced, however, the tumor cannot be easily removed and doctors prescribe chemotherapy and radiation to make it more manageable before attempting surgical removal.

The retrospective analysis, first published online on June 14, found that 45 percent of patients with a particular genetic combination (EGF 61 G/G) emerged disease-free when treated with cetuximab before surgery, compared to 21 percent and 2 percent of patient groups who did not have the same genotype. This is the first study to suggest that the genetic variation -- detectable by blood test -- can be used to predict whether a patient with locally advanced rectal cancer will respond to cetuximab before surgery.

Cetuximab is a drug that is typically used to treat head and neck cancer and colorectal cancer that has spread to other parts of the body. It blocks epidermal growth factor receptors (EGFR) from binding with epidermal growth factor (EGF) proteins found in the body, which have been linked to increased risk for cancer. For tumors that are difficult to cut out but have not yet spread to other parts of the body, the standard treatment is a combination of capecitabine (Xeloda), fluorouracil (5-FU) and radiation. The patients in the study received intravenous doses of cetuximab in addition to standard care.

Additional data is required to validate the results, Lenz said. His lab is participating in another trial looking at a larger sample size in the United States.

The study was performed in the Sharon A. Carpenter Laboratory at the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center and Hospital and funded by the National Institutes of Health, Dhont Family Foundation, Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschfat (DFG), Cologne Fortune and San Pedro Peninsula Cancer Guild. It is the second study published in Clinical Cancer Research that uses the same data set; the first measured gene expression levels of proteins involved in tumor growth. Co-authors include Siwen Hu-Lieskovan, Wu Zhang, Dongyun Yang, Alexander Pohl and Melissa Labonte, among others.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Southern California. The original article was written by Alison Trinidad. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. S. Hu-Lieskovan, D. Vallbohmer, W. Zhang, D. Yang, A. Pohl, M. J. LaBonte, P. Grimminger, A. H. Holscher, R. Semrau, D. Arnold, K. Dellas, A. Debucquoy, K. Haustermans, J.-P. H. Machiels, C. Sempoux, C. Rodel, M. Bracko, V. Velenik, H.-J. Lenz. EGF61 polymorphism predicts complete pathologic response to cetuximab-based chemoradiation independent of KRAS status in locally advanced rectal cancer patients. Clinical Cancer Research, 2011; DOI: 10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-10-2666

Cite This Page:

University of Southern California. "Researchers link genetic marker to rectal cancer treatment." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 July 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/07/110706093908.htm>.
University of Southern California. (2011, July 6). Researchers link genetic marker to rectal cancer treatment. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/07/110706093908.htm
University of Southern California. "Researchers link genetic marker to rectal cancer treatment." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/07/110706093908.htm (accessed August 1, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, August 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Vaccine Might Be Coming, But Where's It Been?

Ebola Vaccine Might Be Coming, But Where's It Been?

Newsy (Aug. 1, 2014) Health officials are working to fast-track a vaccine — the West-African Ebola outbreak has killed more than 700. But why didn't we already have one? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Study Links Certain Birth Control Pills To Breast Cancer

Study Links Certain Birth Control Pills To Breast Cancer

Newsy (Aug. 1, 2014) Previous studies have made the link between birth control and breast cancer, but the latest makes the link to high-estrogen oral contraceptives. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
House Republicans Vote to Sue Obama Over Healthcare Law

House Republicans Vote to Sue Obama Over Healthcare Law

Reuters - US Online Video (July 31, 2014) The Republican-led House of Representatives votes to sue President Obama, accusing him of overstepping his executive authority in making changes to the Affordable Care Act. Mana Rabiee reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Uganda on Alert for Ebola but No Confirmed Cases

Uganda on Alert for Ebola but No Confirmed Cases

AFP (July 31, 2014) Uganda's health minister said on Thursday that there are no confirmed cases of Ebola in the country, but that it remained on alert for cases of the deadly virus. Uganda has suffered Ebola outbreaks in the past, most recently in 2012. Duration: 00:59 Video provided by AFP
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:
from the past week

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