Dr Allen-Mersh and colleagues assessed the potential for reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction-based circulating tumor cells to predict colorectal cancer recurrence.
mRNA for carcinoembryonic antigen and cytokeratin 20 was identified by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction in patients with colorectal cancer,
The blood samples were taken before and after primary tumor resection.
Cancer recurrence was assessed at follow-up.
The team estimated the accuracy of reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction, and primary tumor lymph node positivity in predicting recurrence.
The researchers studied 196 patients with colorectal cancer over a median follow-up of 1393 days from surgery.
|There was a 50% recurrence risk in 48% of patients after resection|
|British Journal of Surgery|
Regression analysis selected 24-hour post-resection reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction positivity before lymph node involvement.
When 24-hour post-resection reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction was combined with lymph node positivity, the hazard ratio increased.
The researchers noted that this attributed a 3% recurrence risk to 52% of patients with colorectal cancer resected with curative intent.
The team observed a 50% recurrence risk to 48% of patients with colorectal cancer resected with curative intent.
Dr Allen-Mersh's team concludes, “Reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction positivity within 24 hours of primary colorectal cancer resection is a strong predictor of colorectal cancer recurrence, and may be useful clinically.”