Author(s): Lavon I, Refael M, Zelikovitch B, Shalom E, Siegal T
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Abstract We evaluated whether cell-free circulating DNA can be used as a noninvasive approach for detection of genetic/epigenetic alterations in brain tumors during the course of the disease. Paired tumor-serum samples from 70 patients with either high-grade astrocytomas (n = 41) or oligodendrogliomas of various grades were analyzed. The median interval between surgery and serum sampling was 1 month (range 0.5-168 months). DNA was extracted from whole blood, serum, and paraffin-embedded tumor sections. Loss of heterozygosity (LOH) in chromosomes 1p, 19q, and 10q was assessed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based microsatellite analysis. The methylation status of O(6)-methyl guanine methyltransferase (MGMT) and phosphatase and tensin homolog promoters was studied by methylation-specific PCR. LOH and/or methylation that could identify DNA as tumor-specific was found in 80.5\% of astrocytic tumors and in all oligodendrogliomas. The rate of serum detection of these biomarkers was 51\% and 55\%, respectively, with specificity around 100\%. The rate of serum detection did not differ between low- and high-grade oligodendrogliomas. Statistically significant tumor-serum concordance was found for MGMT methylation in both astrocytic tumors (83\%; P < .001) and oligodendroglial tumors (72\%; P < .003) and for LOH of 10q (79\%; P < .002) and 1p (62\%; P < .03) in oligodendrogliomas. We conclude that serum DNA in glial tumors is informative for both LOH and aberrant gene promoter methylation analysis during the course of the disease. The sensitivity is moderate and specificity is high for both low- and high-grade tumors. Future studies should identify a panel of biomarkers that bear the highest potential for clinical application.
This article was published in Neuro Oncol
and referenced in Journal of Blood Disorders & Transfusion