Study finds DNA markers may be valuable in early detection of colorectal cancer


Newswise — CHICAGO ­— New studies on early detection of colorectal cancer and the quality-of-life impact of cell therapy are among several Mayo Clinic presentations at the American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting in Chicago.

Embargoed until 7:30 a.m. ET, Monday, June 3.

Hao Xie, M.D., Ph.D., a Mayo Clinic hematology-oncology fellow, will present an abstract, "Methylated DNA Markers in Primary and Metastatic Colorectal Cancers," that indicates the DNA markers are broadly informative for early detection of cancer. Dr. Xie is the lead author of the study.

The research team studied 87 patients with paired primary and metastatic colorectal cancer, and found that 14 individual marker levels, as well as the average level of all markers combined, were highly concordant and may be valuable in early detection of recurrent disease. The researchers call for more study for noninvasive surveillance after surgery and monitoring of treatment response.

"Existing tools to detect colon cancer recurrence are expensive and not always reliable," says John Kisiel, M.D., a Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist and senior author. "In this study, we found that methylated DNA markers from primary colon cancer potentially are valuable and should be further studied for their utility to detect colon cancer that has spread."

The abstract will be discussed during the Gastrointestinal (Colorectal) Cancer poster session on Monday, June 3, from 8 to 11 a.m. CDT.

Embargoed until 7:30 ET, Saturday, June 1.

Surbhi Sidana, M.B.B.S., an advanced hematology fellow at Mayo Clinic's Rochester, Minnesota, campus, will present an abstract, "Quality of Life in Patients Undergoing CAR-T Therapy Versus Stem Cell Transplant," that suggests patients receiving chimeric antigen receptor therapy (CAR-T cell therapy) do not experience a more significant decline in quality of life, compared with patients undergoing a bone marrow stem cell transplant using their own or donor stem cells.

The prospective study, funded by the Mayo Clinic Robert D. and Patricia E. Kern Center for the Science of Health Care Delivery, suggests that short-term quality of life, specifically physical and functional well-being may be better in patients receiving CAR-T cell therapy. "While our data is still preliminary and the study is ongoing, these findings are reassuring for both patients and physicians," Dr. Sidana says. "Although CAR-T cell therapy may result in short-term serious side effects in some patients, the overall impact on quality of life is not worse than other established forms of cellular therapy, which have side effects, as well."

Updated results, including three-month follow-up data, will be presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting at the poster session on Saturday, June 1, from 1:15 to 4:15 p.m. CDT.

The American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting will be May 31-June 4 and is the largest annual international gathering of oncology clinicians and researchers.

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