Author(s): Coelho AL, Arajo A, Gomes M, Catarino R, Marques A,
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Abstract Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is the most common cancer and the leading cause of death from cancer worldwide. Antiangiogenic strategies directed towards tumor stroma are becoming gold standard in NSCLC treatment and researchers have been searching for biomarkers to identify patients for whom therapy with antiangiogenic inhibitors may be most beneficial and the importance of these as prognostic factors in NSCLC. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the prognostic value of circulating Ang-2 mRNA levels prior to treatment in NSCLC patients. The mRNA levels were determined by quantitative real-time PCR in the peripheral blood of 92 NSCLC patients. Our results demonstrate that patients with high circulating Ang-2 mRNA levels have diminished overall survival when compared to those with low mRNA levels (20.3 months vs 34.3 months, respectively; Log Rank Test, p = 0.016), when considering all NSCLC stages and this difference is even bigger when considering only patients with stage IV (15.9 months vs 31.3 months, respectively; Log Rank Test, p = 0.036). Moreover, circulating Ang-2 mRNA levels independently determine overall survival, and the concordance (c) index analysis showed that the definition of a nomogram that contains information regarding tumor stage, patients' smoking status and circulating Ang-2 mRNA levels present an increased capacity to predict overall survival in NSCLC patients (c-index 0.798). These results suggest that this nomogram could serve as a unique and practical tool to determine prognosis in NSCLC, not relying on the availability of adequate surgical or biopsy specimens of NSCLC. Attending to our results, the circulating Ang-2 mRNA levels should also be included in the design of preclinical studies and clinical trials involving antiangiogenic drugs targeting Ang-2, to guide adequate patient stratification and dose selection and increasing the likelihood of benefit to a level that is acceptable to patients and clinicians.
This article was published in PLoS One
and referenced in Transplant Reports : Open Access