Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Simple protein test could improve prediction of survival rates for patients with head, neck cancer

Date:
January 24, 2014
Source:
Manchester University
Summary:
Scientists used a simple protein test that could prove more useful in predicting survival chances for patients with head-and-neck cancer compared to existing methods.The team believes the test could allow doctors to choose more appropriate and tailored treatments.Oral cancers, including the tongue and tonsils, are usually associated with tobacco and alcohol intake. However, increasing numbers of cases are instead linked to human papillomaviruses (HPV).

Simple protein test could improve prediction of survival rates for patients with head and neck cancer

Related Articles


Scientists from The University of Manchester -- part of the Manchester Cancer Research Centre -- used a simple protein test that could prove more useful in predicting survival chances for patients with head-and-neck cancer compared to existing methods.

The team, funded by Cancer Research UK, believe the test could allow doctors to choose more appropriate and tailored treatments. Oral cancers, including the tongue and tonsils, are usually associated with tobacco and alcohol intake.

However, increasing numbers of cases are instead linked to human papillomaviruses (HPV) -- which occur in younger people and have a different biology and a better prognosis. One approach for detecting HPV-associated oral cancer relies on finding HPV DNA in the tumour sample but these DNA-based tests may not accurately classify the tumour.

Another approach is to use a marker of HPV rather than testing for HPV DNA directly. The p16 protein usually disappears in tumours that are not caused by HPV infection and has been proposed as a surrogate marker of HPV.

The researchers looked at differences in clinical characteristics, treatment and survival between p16-positive and p16-negative oral cancers in a large group of 217 patients.

Professor Catharine West, from The University of Manchester and Manchester Cancer Research Centre who led the research, said: "We know that in most cases, p16 is linked to differences in survival. We wanted to see how it compared to other measures such as the stage of disease -- which tells us the size and spread of the cancer. Anything that allows us to predict outcome could help doctors plan more personalised treatments for individual patients."

The study, published in the journal Clinical Oncology, shows that the presence of p16 in a tumour was strongly linked to increased survival. They found that tumour stage was linked to survival in p16-negative tumours, but not in p16-positive tumours.

Professor West said: "Despite presenting with a more advanced stage of cancer, patients whose tumours tested positive for p16 had greater survival when compared with p16-negative patients. "Applying this test in the clinic could help guide treatment decisions and potentially allow doctors to choose more appropriate and tailored treatments."

"Many studies have now shown p16 status is strongly linked to survival. Now we have shown the test works better than routine staging for some cancers, we would recommend this test be offered as standard," added Professor West.

Jessica Kirby, Cancer Research UK's senior health information manager, said: "This study clearly shows that testing for HPV status using p16 levels can be valuable as one of a number of ways doctors determine their patients' prognosis. HPV-associated head and neck cancers are becoming much more common over time, and there's a wealth of evidence that patients with HPV-positive tumours tend to have better outcomes than HPV-negative patients."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Manchester University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Oguejiofor KK, Hall JS, Mani N, Douglas C, Slevin NJ, Homer J, Hall G, West CM. The prognostic significance of the biomarker p16 in oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma. Clinical Oncology, January 2014

Cite This Page:

Manchester University. "Simple protein test could improve prediction of survival rates for patients with head, neck cancer." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 January 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140124082658.htm>.
Manchester University. (2014, January 24). Simple protein test could improve prediction of survival rates for patients with head, neck cancer. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 29, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140124082658.htm
Manchester University. "Simple protein test could improve prediction of survival rates for patients with head, neck cancer." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140124082658.htm (accessed January 29, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Malnutrition on the Rise as Violence Flares in C. Africa

Malnutrition on the Rise as Violence Flares in C. Africa

AFP (Jan. 28, 2015) Violence can flare up at any moment in Bambari with only a bridge separating Muslims and Christians. Malnutrition is on the rise and lack of water means simple cooking fires threaten to destroy makeshift camps where people are living. Duration: 00:40 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Poultry Culled in Taiwan to Thwart Bird Flu

Poultry Culled in Taiwan to Thwart Bird Flu

Reuters - News Video Online (Jan. 28, 2015) Taiwan culls over a million poultry in efforts to halt various strains of avian flu. Julie Noce reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Media Criticizing Parents For Not Vaccinating Children

Media Criticizing Parents For Not Vaccinating Children

Newsy (Jan. 28, 2015) As the Disneyland measles outbreak continues to spread, the media says parents who choose not to vaccinate their children are part of the cause. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Shark Bite Victim Making Amazing Recovery

Shark Bite Victim Making Amazing Recovery

AP (Jan. 27, 2015) A Texas woman who lost more than five pounds of flesh to a shark in the Bahamas earlier this month could be released from a Florida hospital soon. Experts believe she was bitten by a bull shark while snorkeling. (Jan. 27) Video provided by AP
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