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1.  High-dose chemotherapy and autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation in the treatment of children and adolescents with Ewing sarcoma family of tumors 
Korean Journal of Pediatrics  2013;56(9):401-406.
We performed a pilot study to determine the benefit of high-dose chemotherapy and autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation (HDCT/autoPBSCT) for patients with Ewing sarcoma family of tumors.
We retrospectively analyzed the data of patients who received HDCT/autoPBSCT at Korea Cancer Center Hospital. Patients with relapsed, metastatic, or centrally located tumors were eligible for the study.
A total of 9 patients (3 male, 6 female), with a median age at HDCT/autoPBSCT of 13.4 years (range, 7.1 to 28.2 years), were included in this study. Patients underwent conventional chemotherapy and local control either by surgery or radiation therapy, and had achieved complete response (CR, n=7), partial response (n=1), or stable disease (n=1) prior to HDCT/autoPBSCT. There was no transplant-related mortality. However, the median duration of overall survival and event-free survival after HDCT/autoPBSCT were 13.3 months (range, 5.3 to 44.5 months) and 6.2 months (range, 2.1 to 44.5 months), respectively. At present, 4 patients are alive and 5 patients who experienced adverse events (2 metastasis, 2 local recur, and 1 progressive disease) survived for a median time of 2.8 months (range, 0.1 to 10.7 months). The 2-year survival after HDCT/autoPBSCT was 44.4%±16.6% and disease status at the time of HDCT/autoPBSCT tended to influence survival (57.1%±18.7% of cases with CR vs. 0% of cases with non-CR, P=0.07).
Disease status at HDCT/autoPBSCT tended to influence survival. Further studies are necessary to define the role of HDCT/autoPBSCT and to identify subgroup of patients who might benefit from this investigational treatment.
PMCID: PMC3819677  PMID: 24223602
Ewing sarcoma; High-dose chemotherapy; Stem cell transplantation
2.  Consolidative high-dose chemotherapy after conventional-dose chemotherapy as first salvage treatment for male patients with metastatic germ cell tumours 
Some men with metastatic germ cell tumours that have progressed after response to initial cisplatin-based combination chemotherapy are cured with conventional dose first salvage chemotherapy (CDCT) – however, many are not. High-dose chemotherapy with autologous stem cell rescue (HDCT) may be of value in these patients. Prognosis has recently been better defined by International Prognostic Factor Study Group (IPFSG) prognostic factors. HDCT after response to CDCT has been offered at our institution over the past two decades. We retrospectively assessed the validity of the IPFSG prognostic factors in our patients and evaluated the value of HDCT.
We identified eligible men with metastatic germ cell tumour progressed after at least 3 cycles of cisplatin-based chemotherapy and treated with cisplatin-based CDCT alone or with carboplatin-based HDCT. We also collected their clinical data. Patients were classified into risk groups using IPFSG factors, and progression-free and overall survival factors were analyzed and compared in patients treated with CDCT alone and with HDCT.
We identified 38 eligible first salvage patients who had received a median of 4 cycles (range, 1 to 7 cycles) of CDCT. Twenty patients received CDCT alone and 18 patients received CDCT plus HDCT. The overall median progression- free survival was 24.6 months (95%CI, 7.3 to 28.7 months) and overall median overall survival was 34.6 months (95%CI, 17.2 to 51.3 months). Distribution by IPFSG category and 2-year progression- free survival and 3-year overall survival rates within each risk category were very similar to the IPFSG results. There were two toxic deaths with CDCT and none with HDCT. Overall, patients treated with CDCT plus HDCT had improved progression- free survival and overall survival.
The IPFSG prognostic risk factors appeared valid in our patient population. The safety of HDCT with etoposide and carboplatin was confirmed. HDCT was associated with improved progression- free survival and overall survival outcomes, consistent with observations of the IPFSG group. Ideally, the value of optimal HDCT should be determined in comparison to optimal CDCT as first salvage therapy in men with metastatic germ cell tumour with a randomized trial.
PMCID: PMC3328550  PMID: 22511417
3.  Efficacy of High-dose Chemotherapy and Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation in Patients with Relapsed Medulloblastoma: A Report on The Korean Society for Pediatric Neuro-Oncology (KSPNO)-S-053 Study 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2010;25(8):1160-1166.
The efficacy and toxicity of high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell transplantation (HDCT/ASCT) were investigated for improving the outcomes of patients with relapsed medulloblastoma. A total of 15 patients with relapsed medulloblastoma were enrolled in the KSPNO-S-053 study from May 2005 to May 2007. All patients received approximately 4 cycles of salvage chemotherapy after relapse. Thirteen underwent HDCT/ASCT; CTE and CM regimen were employed for the first HDCT (HDCT1) and second HDCT (HDCT2), respectively, and 7 underwent HDCT2. One transplant related mortality (TRM) due to veno-occlusive disease (VOD) occurred during HDCT1 but HDCT2 was tolerable with no further TRM. The 3-yr overall survival probability and event-free survival rates ±95% confidence intervals (CI) were 33.3±12.2% and 26.7% ±11.4%, respectively. When analysis was confined to only patients who had a complete response (CR) or partial response (PR) prior to HDCT, the probability of 3-yr overall survival rates ±95% CI was 40.0±15.5%. No patients with stable disease (SD) or progressive disease (PD) survived. Survival rates from protocol KSPNO-S-053 are encouraging and show that tumor status prior to HDCT/ASCT is an important factor to consider for improving survival rates of patients with relapsed medulloblastoma.
PMCID: PMC2908784  PMID: 20676326
Recurrence; Medulloblastoma; Transplantation, Autologous; Tandem; Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation
4.  High-Dose Chemotherapy Followed by Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation as a First-Line Therapy for High-Risk Primary Breast Cancer: A Meta-Analysis 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(3):e33388.
Background and Objectives
Several trials have generated conflicting results about the results of high-dose chemotherapy followed by autologous stem cell transplantation (HDCT) for primary breast cancer. This meta-analysis summarizes the available evidence from all suitable studies.
Design and Methods
Prospective, randomized trials with HDCT as a first-line therapy for primary breast cancer were included in this meta-analysis. The primary outcome of interest for our analysis was survival (disease-free survival and overall survival); secondary endpoints included treatment-related mortality (TRM) and second (non-breast) cancers. We used a median age of 47, a PR positive rate of 50% and a premenopausal rate of 70% as cutoff values to complete the subgroup analyses, which were pre-planned according to the prepared protocol.
Fourteen trials with 5747 patients were eligible for the meta-analysis. Compared with non-HDCT, non-significant second (non-breast) cancers (RR = 1.28; 95% CI = 0.82–1.98) and higher TRM (RR = 3.42; 95% CI = 1.32–8.86) were associated with HDCT for primary breast cancer. A significant DFS benefit of HDCT was documented (HR = 0.89; 95% CI = 0.79–0.99). No difference in OS (overall survival) was found when the studies were pooled (HR = 0.91; 95% CI = 0.82–1.00, p = 0.062). In subgroup analysis, age and hormone receptor status had a significant interaction with prolonged DFS and OS.
HDCT has a benefit on DFS and OS compared to SDC in some special patients with high-risk primary breast cancer.
PMCID: PMC3299795  PMID: 22428041
5.  Triple-negative breast cancer: multipronged approach, single-arm pilot phase II study 
Cancer Medicine  2012;1(1):89-95.
Anthracyclines (A) and taxanes (T) are standard first-line chemotherapy agents for patients with advanced breast cancer. Platinum analogues have also shown activity in the triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) histology, but clinical data are limited. Here we report the long-term follow-up of a phase II study on TNBC treated with a combined modality therapy, including induction with AT, cyclophosphamide, methotrexate, and 5-fluorouracil (CMF) with concurrent radiation therapy, and a dose-dense consolidation chemotherapy (HDCT) with carboplatin (CBDCA), ifosfamide (IFX), etoposide (VP-16). Patients' median age was 44 years, with 73% premenopausal. Epirubicin 75 mg/m2 and docetaxel 75 mg/m2 were administered to 70 patients with TNBC: as neoadjuvant and adjuvant therapy to 12 and 58 patients, respectively. Postoperative radiation therapy, 5000 cGy, was delivered, synchronous with triweekly CMF. After radiation therapy, two courses of HDCT with CBDCA, IFX, VP-16, were given, with hematological growth factors. After a median follow-up of 81 months, all patients were evaluable for toxicity and response. Most important toxicity were grade 3 skin reaction and grade 4 hematological in 3% and 31% of patients, respectively. Pathological complete response was observed in 25% of patients receiving preoperative chemotherapy. Treatment failures were as follows: eight visceral, four contralateral breast cancer, four locoregional, and one leukemia. Five-year progression-free survival and overall survival rate were 78% and 91%, respectively. Induction chemotherapy, followed by chemoradiation therapy and HDCT, provides a prolonged disease-free period and a significant increase in overall survival in TNBC, with an acceptable toxicity profile.
PMCID: PMC3544434  PMID: 23342258
Concurrent chemotherapy and radiation therapy; high-dose chemotherapy; platinum analogues; triple-negative breast cancer
6.  High-dose Chemotherapy and Autologous Stem Cell Rescue in Patients with High-risk Stage 3 Neuroblastoma: 10-Year Experience at a Single Center 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2009;24(4):660-667.
High-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell rescue (HDCT/ASCR) was applied to improve the prognosis of patients with high-risk stage 3 neuroblastoma. From January 1997 to December 2006, 28 patients were newly diagnosed as stage 3 neuroblastoma. Nine of 11 patients with N-myc amplification and 5 of 17 patients without N-myc amplification (poor response in 2 patients, persistent residual tumor in 2 and relapse in 1) underwent single or tandem HDCT/ASCR. Patients without high-risk features received conventional treatment modalities only. While 8 of 9 patients underwent single HDCT/ASCR and the remaining one patient underwent tandem HDCT/ASCR during the early study period, all 5 patients underwent tandem HDCT/ASCR during the late period. Toxicities associated with HDCT/ASCR were tolerable and there was no treatment-related mortality. While the tumor relapsed in two of eight patients in single HDCT/ASCR group, all six patients in tandem HDCT/ASCR group remained relapse free. The 5-yr event-free survival (EFS) from diagnosis, in patients with N-myc amplification, was 71.6±14.0%. In addition, 12 of 14 patients who underwent HDCT/ASCR remained event free resulting in an 85.1±9.7% 5-yr EFS after the first HDCT/ASCR. The present study demonstrates that HDCT/ASCR may improve the survival of patients with high-risk stage 3 neuroblastoma.
PMCID: PMC2719186  PMID: 19654949
Neuroblastoma; High-dose Chemotherapy; Autologous Stem Cell Rescue; Prognosis; N-myc
7.  Double high-dose chemotherapy with autologous stem cell transplantation in patients with high-risk neuroblastoma: a pilot study in a single center. 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2002;17(4):537-543.
Double high-dose chemotherapy (HDCT) was applied to 18 patients with highrisk neuroblastoma including 14 patients who could not achieve complete response (CR) even after the first HDCT. In 12 patients, successive double HDCT was rescued with peripheral blood stem cells collected during a single round of leukaphereses and in 6 patients, second or more rounds of leukaphereses were necessary after the first HDCT to rescue the second HDCT. The median interval between the first and second HDCT (76 days; range, 47-112) in the single harvest group was shorter than that (274.5 days; range, 83-329) in the double harvest group (p<0.01). Hematologic recovery was slow in the second HDCT. Six (33.3%) treatment-related mortalities (TRM) occurred during the second HDCT but were not related to the shorter interval. Disease-free survival rates at 2 years with a median follow-up of 24 months (range, 6-46) in the single and double harvest group were 57.1% and 33.3%, respectively. These results suggest that successive double HDCT using the single harvest approach may improve the survival of high-risk patients, especially who could not achieve CR after the first HDCT despite delayed hematologic recovery and high rate of TRM during the second HDCT.
PMCID: PMC3054907  PMID: 12172052
8.  Loss of heterozygosity: An independent prognostic factor of colorectal cancer 
AIM: Colorectal cancers result from the accumulation of several distinct genetic alterations. This study was to investigate the frequency and prognostic value of loss of heterozygosity (LOH) and microsatellite instability (MSI) at 14 genetic loci located near or within regions containing important genes implicated in colorectal tumorigenesis.
METHODS: We studied colorectal cancers with corresponding normal mucosae in 207 patients (139 males and 68 females, mean age at the time of tumor resection 66.2±12.4 years, range 22-88 years). There were 37 right-sided colonic tumors, 85 left-sided colonic tumors and 85 rectal tumors. The distribution of tumor staging was stage I in 25, stage II in 73, stage III in 68, and stage IV in 41. We analyzed the LOH and MSI of HPC1, hMSH2, hMLH1, APC, MET, P53, NH23-H1, DCC, BAT25, BAT26, D17S250, MYCL1 and D8S254 with fluorescent polymerase chain reaction and denatured gel electrophoresis. High-frequency LOH was determined to be greater than three, or more than 50% of the informative marker with LOH. High-frequency MSI (MSI-H) was determined as more than four markers with instability (>30%). Correlations of LOH and MSI with clinical outcomes and pathological features were analyzed and compared.
RESULTS: The occurrence of MSI-H was 7.25%, located predominantly in the right colons (7/15) and had a higher frequency of poor differentiation (6/15) and mucin production (7/15). LOH in at least one genetic locus occurred in 78.7% of the tumors and was significantly associated with disease progression. Of the 166 potentially cured patients, 45 developed tumor recurrence within 36 mo of follow-up. Clinicopathological factors affecting 3-year disease-free survival (DFS) were TNM staging, grade of differentiation, preoperative CEA level, and high LOH status. Patients with high LOH tumors had a significantly lower DFS (50%) compared with patients with low LOH tumors (84%). Of the patients developing subsequent tumor recurrence, the number and percentage of LOH were 2.97 and 46.8% respectively, similar to the stage IV disease patients. TNM staging had the most significant impact on DFS, followed by high LOH status.
CONCLUSION: Clinical manifestations of LOH and MSI are different in colorectal cancer patients. High-frequency LOH is associated with high metastatic potential of colorectal cancers.
PMCID: PMC4250583  PMID: 15682467
Colorectal Cancer; Loss of Heterozygosity; Prognosis
9.  Studies on p53, BAX and Bcl-2 protein expression and microsatellite instability in stage III (UICC) colon cancer treated by adjuvant chemotherapy: major prognostic impact of proapoptotic BAX 
British Journal of Cancer  2007;96(9):1409-1418.
We evaluated the expression patterns of proapoptotic BAX, antiapoptotic Bcl-2 and p53, the proposed upstream effector of these molecules, as potential prognostic markers in UICC stage III colon cancer by immunohistochemical staining. To identify high-frequency microsatellite instability (MSI+) individuals, we performed single-strand conformation polymorphism-based analysis for BAT26. A total of 188 patients who had received 5-fluorouracil (5-FU)-based adjuvant chemotherapy (5-FU/folinic acid or 5-FU/levamisole) were enrolled. Median follow-up was 84.5 months. We found that BAX, Bcl-2 and p53 protein expressions were high or positive in 59, 70 and 50% of 188 cases, respectively. MSI+ tumours were detected in 9% of 174 evaluable patients. BAX or Bcl-2 was correlated with a higher degree of differentiation or left-sided tumours (P=0.01 or P=0.03, respectively); MSI was correlated with right-sided tumours (P<0.0001). In contrast to p53, Bcl-2, or MSI, low BAX, advanced pN category, low grade of differentiation and treatment with 5-FU/levamisole were univariately associated with poorer disease-free survival (DFS) (P=0.0005, P=0.001, P=0.005 and P=0.01, respectively) and poorer overall survival (OS) (P=0.002, P=0.0001, P=0.003 and P=0.02, respectively). Besides pN category and treatment arm, BAX was an independent variable related to both OS and DFS (P=0.003 and P=0.001, respectively). In both univariate and multivariate analysis, the p53−/BAX high in comparison with the p53+/BAX high subset conferred a significantly improved DFS (P=0.03 and P=0.03, respectively) as well as a marginally improved OS (P=0.07 and P=0.08, respectively). BAX protein expression may be of central significance for clinical outcome to 5-FU-based adjuvant chemotherapy in stage III colon cancer, and bivariate analysis of p53/BAX possibly may provide further prognostic evidence.
PMCID: PMC2360187  PMID: 17426704
adjuvant chemotherapy; BAT26; BAX; Bcl-2; colon carcinoma; microsatellite instability; p53/BAX pathway; prognosis
10.  Efficacy of Tandem High-Dose Chemotherapy and Autologous Stem Cell Rescue in Patients Over 1 Year of Age with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma: The Korean Society of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology Experience Over 6 Years (2000-2005) 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2010;25(5):691-697.
The efficacy of tandem high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell rescue (HDCT/ASCR) was investigated in patients with high-risk neuroblastoma. Patients over 1 yr of age who were newly diagnosed with stage 4 neuroblastoma from January 2000 to December 2005 were enrolled in The Korean Society of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology registry. All patients who were assigned to receive HDCT/ASCR at diagnosis were retrospectively analyzed to investigate the efficacy of single or tandem HDCT/ASCR. Seventy and 71 patients were assigned to receive single or tandem HDCT/ASCR at diagnosis. Fifty-seven and 59 patients in the single or tandem HDCT group underwent single or tandem HDCT/ASCR as scheduled. Twenty-four and 38 patients in the single or tandem HDCT group remained event free with a median follow-up of 56 (24-88) months. When the survival rate was analyzed according to intent-to-treat at diagnosis, the probability of the 5-yr event-free survival±95% confidence intervals was higher in the tandem HDCT group than in the single HDCT group (51.2±12.4% vs. 31.3±11.5%, P=0.030). The results of the present study demonstrate that the tandem HDCT/ASCR strategy is significantly better than the single HDCT/ASCR strategy for improved survival in the treatment of high-risk neuroblastoma patients.
PMCID: PMC2858826  PMID: 20436703
Neuroblastoma; High-dose Chemotherapy; Transplantation, Autologous
11.  Prognostic Value of EMT-Circulating Tumor Cells in Metastatic Breast Cancer Patients Undergoing High-Dose Chemotherapy with Autologous Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation 
Journal of Cancer  2012;3:369-380.
Background: Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) are an independent prognostic factor in metastatic breast cancer (MBC) patients treated by conventional dose chemotherapy. The aim of this study was to determine the role of CTCs and CTCs undergoing epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in metastatic breast cancer. We used the platform of high-dose chemotherapy (HDCT) and autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (AHSCT) to study the CTCs and CTCs with EMT.
Patients and methods: CTCs were enumerated in 21 MBC patients before apheresis and 1 month after AHSCT. CD34-depleted apheresis products were analyzed for CD326+ epithelial and Aldefluor+ cancer stem cells (CSC) by flow cytometry and were depleted of CD45+ cells and assessed for EMT-inducing transcription factors (EMT-TF) by quantitative RT-PCR.
Results: Patients with ≥ 5 CTCs/7.5 mL of peripheral blood 1 month after AHSCT had shorter progression-free survival (PFS) (P=0.02) and overall survival (OS) (P=0.02). Patients with apheresis products containing high percentages of CD326+ epithelial cells or overexpressing EMT-TF had shorter PFS. In multivariate analysis, low percentage of CD326+ epithelial cells and response to HDCT with AHSCT were associated with longer PFS, whereas lower CTCs after AHSCT was associated with longer OS. High CTCs, 1 month after AHSCT correlated with shorter PFS and OS in MBC patients undergoing HDCT and AHSCT, while CTCs with EMT and CSCs phenotype in apheresis products are associated with relapse.
Conclusion: Our data suggest that CTC and CTCs with EMT are prognostic in MBC patients undergoing HDCT followed by AHSCT.
PMCID: PMC3471078  PMID: 23074378
metastatic breast cancer; circulating tumor cells; epithelial-mesenchymal transition; high-dose chemotherapy; autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.
12.  Treatment of young children with CNS-primitive neuroectodermal tumors/pineoblastomas in the prospective multicenter trial HIT 2000 using different chemotherapy regimens and radiotherapy 
Neuro-Oncology  2012;15(2):224-234.
Especially in young children, primitive neuroectodermal tumors of the central nervous system (CNS-PNET) and pineoblastomas are associated with an unfavorable outcome, and only a few prospective trials have been conducted thus far.
From January 2001 through January 2005, 17 eligible children aged <4 years with CNS-PNET not otherwise specified (n = 8), ependymoblastoma (n = 1), or pineoblastoma (n = 8) confirmed by central review were prospectively treated in the trial HIT 2000. In nonmetastatic disease (n = 11), up to 5 postoperative cycles of HIT-SKK systemic multiagent chemotherapy (8 months duration), followed by craniospinal radiotherapy (CSI), were given. In metastatic disease (M1-M3, n = 6), treatment consisted of a shorter induction chemotherapy (2–3 months) with carboplatin and etoposide, followed by tandem high-dose chemotherapy (HDCT) in case of good response to induction. During induction and HDCT, patients received intraventricular methotrexate. CSI was applied to all patients with poor response to induction or residual disease after HDCT and was optional for patients with residual disease before HDCT.
Five-year event-free survival and overall survival rates ± standard error for all eligible patients were 24% ± 10% and 40% ± 12%, respectively (median follow-up of survivors: 8.3 years). Only one patient with nonmetastatic disease remained free of relapse/progressive disease during induction. Three of 6 patients with metastatic disease responded to induction and received tandem-HDCT, followed by preventive CSI, and remain in continuous complete remission.
Short intensive induction chemotherapy followed by tandem-HDCT in young children with CNS-PNET/pineoblastomas seems to be superior to the prolonged and less intensive induction regimen.
PMCID: PMC3548584  PMID: 23223339
brain tumors, chemotherapy; pineoblastoma; primitive neuroectodermal tumor (PNET); radiotherapy; young children
13.  Allelic Imbalance at p53 and Microsatellite Instability Are Predictive Markers for Resistance to Chemotherapy in Gastric Carcinoma 
Annals of surgical oncology  2009;16(10):2926-2935.
Combined treatment with 5-fluorouracil and cisplatin (FP chemotherapy) is an effective neoadjuvant regimen for gastric carcinoma. However, it is ineffective in half of all patients. This study tests the hypothesis that genetic markers might identify those patients with gastric cancer who would respond to neoadjuvant FP chemotherapy.
Materials and Methods
A total of 23 patients with gastric carcinoma were treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy. Pretreatment biopsy specimens before neoadjuvant chemotherapy were obtained from 15 of 23 patients, and resected tumors were obtained from all 23. Genetic studies were performed to detect allelic imbalance (AI), microsatellite instability (MSI), and K-ras mutation.
A clinical response was observed in 13 of 23 patients. Kaplan–Meier survival curve showed that clinical responder group had a significantly higher likelihood of overall survival (P = 0.0165), compared with nonresponder group. In 23 resection specimens, 10 of 23 tumors presented AI at the p53 locus and/or MSI; 8 of the 10 tumors were nonresponders, while 12 of 13 tumors without p53 AI or MSI were responders (P = 0.0007). In 15 pretreatment biopsy specimens, 8 tumors had p53 AI and/or MSI; 7 of the 8 tumors were nonresponders, while 6 of 7 tumors without p53 AI or MSI were responders to preoperative chemotherapy (P = 0.008). Tumors with AI at the p53 locus and/or MSI were significantly more resistant to neoadjuvant chemotherapy. No relationship was found between K-ras mutations and responses.
Analysis for p53 AI and MSI might represent a clinically useful approach to predicting the response to neoadjuvant FP chemotherapy in gastric carcinoma.
PMCID: PMC2865194  PMID: 19597886
14.  A randomized trial of amifostine in patients with high-dose VIC chemotherapy plus autologous blood stem cell transplanation 
British Journal of Cancer  2001;84(3):313-320.
This pilot study evaluates the degree of side effects during high-dose chemotherapy (HD-VIC) plus autologous bone marrow transplant (HDCT) and its possible prevention by the cytoprotective thiol-derivate amifostine. Additionally, the in-patient medical costs of both treatment arms were compared. 40 patients with solid tumours were randomized to receive HD-VIC chemotherapy with or without amifostine (910 mg/m2 at day 1–3) given as a short infusion prior to carboplatin and ifosfamide. Patients were stratified according to pretreatment. HDCT consisted of an 18 h infusion of carboplatin (500 mg/m2/d over 18 h), ifosfamide (4 g/m2/d over 4 h) and etoposide (500 mg/m2/d) all given for 3 consecutive days. All patients received prophylactic application of G-CSF (5 μg kg−1 subcutaneously) to ameliorate neutropenia after treatment. Patients were monitored for nephrotoxicity, gastrointestinal side effects, haematopoietic recovery, as well as frequency of fever and infections. The median fall of the glomerular filtration rate (GFR) was 10% from baseline in the amifostine group (105 to 95 ml min−1) and 37% in the control patient group (107 to 67 ml min−1) (P< 0.01). Amifostine-treated patients revealed a less pronounced increase in albumine and low molecular weight protein urinary excretion. Stomatitis grade III/IV occurred in 25% without versus 0% of patients with amifostine (P = 0.01). Acute nausea/vomiting was frequently observed immediately during or after the application of amifostine despite intensive antiemetic prophylaxis consisting of 5-HT3-receptor antagonists/dexamethasone/trifluorpromazine. However, delayed emesis occurred more often in the control patients. Engraftment of neutrophil (> 500 μl−1) and thrombocytes (> 25 000 μl−1)were observed at days 9 versus 10 and 10 versus 12, respectively, both slightly in favour of the amifostine arm. In addition, a lower number of days with fever and a shortened duration of hospital stay were observed in the amifostine arm. The reduction of acute toxicity observed in the amifostine arm resulted in 30% savings in costs for supportive care (Euro 4396 versus Euro 3153 per patient). Taking into account the drug costs of amifostine, calculation of in-patient treatment costs from the start of chemotherapy to discharge revealed additional costs of Euro 540 per patient in the amifostine arm. This randomized pilot study indicates that both organ and haematotoxicity of HD-VIC chemotherapy can be ameliorated by the use of amifostine. Additionally, a nearly complete preservation of GFR was observed in amifostine-treated patients which may be advantageous if repetitive cycles of HDCT are planned. Larger randomized trials evaluating amifostine cytoprotection during high-dose chemotherapy are warranted. © 2001 Cancer Research Campaign
PMCID: PMC2363753  PMID: 11161394
toxicity; high-dose chemotherapy; PBSC transplantation; cytoprotection; amifostine; pharmacoeconomics
15.  Tandem High-Dose Chemotherapy and Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation in Young Children with Atypical Teratoid/Rhabdoid Tumor of the Central Nervous System 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2012;27(2):135-140.
The feasibility and effectiveness of tandem high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell transplantation (HDCT/autoSCT) were evaluated in children younger than 3 yr of age with atypical teratoid/rhabdoid tumors (ATRT). Tandem HDCT/autoSCT was administered following six cycles of induction chemotherapy. Radiotherapy (RT) was administered if the tumor relapsed or progressed, otherwise, it was administered after 3 yr of age. Tumors relapsed or progressed during induction chemotherapy in 5 of 9 patients enrolled; 3 of these 5 received tandem HDCT/autoSCT as a salvage treatment. One patient died from sepsis during induction chemotherapy. The remaining 3 patients proceeded to tandem HDCT/autoSCT; however, 2 of these patients showed tumor relapse/progression after tandem HDCT/autoSCT. All 7 relapses/progressions occurred at primary sites even in patients with leptomeningeal seeding. Toxicities during tandem HDCT/autoSCT were manageable. A total of 5 patients were alive with a median follow-up of 20 (range 16-70) months from diagnosis. Four of 5 patients who received RT after relapse/progression are alive. The probability of overall survival at 3 yr from diagnosis was 53.3% ± 17.3%. Our tandem HDCT/autoSCT is feasible; however, early administration of RT prior to tandem HDCT/autoSCT should be considered to improve the outcome after tandem HDCT/autoSCT.
PMCID: PMC3271285  PMID: 22323859
Rhabdoid Tumor; Central Nervous System; Drug Therapy; Stem Cell Transplantation; Radiotherapy; Child
16.  Associations of beta-catenin alterations and MSI screening status with expression of key cell cycle regulating proteins and survival from colorectal cancer 
Diagnostic Pathology  2013;8:10.
Despite their pivotal roles in colorectal carcinogenesis, the interrelationship and prognostic significance of beta-catenin alterations and microsatellite instability (MSI) in colorectal cancer (CRC) needs to be further clarified. In this paper, we studied the associations between beta-catenin overexpression and MSI status with survival from CRC, and with expression of p21, p27, cyclin D1 and p53, in a large, prospective cohort study.
Immunohistochemical MSI-screening status and expression of p21, p27 and p53 was assessed in tissue microarrays with tumours from 557 cases of incident CRC in the Malmö Diet and Cancer Study. Chi Square and Spearman’s correlation tests were used to explore the associations between beta-catenin expression, MSI status, clinicopathological characteristics and investigative parameters. Kaplan-Meier analysis and Cox proportional hazards modelling were used to assess the relationship between beta-catenin overexpression, MSI status and cancer specific survival (CSS).
Positive MSI screening status was significantly associated with older age, female sex, proximal tumour location, non-metastatic disease, and poor differentiation, and inversely associated with beta-catenin overexpression. Beta-catenin overexpression was significantly associated with distal tumour location, low T-stage and well-differentiated tumours. Patients with MSI tumours had a significantly prolonged CSS in the whole cohort, and in stage III-IV disease, also in multivariable analysis, but not in stage I-II disease. Beta-catenin overexpression was associated with a favourable prognosis in the full cohort and in patients with stage III-IV disease. Neither MSI nor beta-catenin status were predictive for response to adjuvant chemotherapy in curatively treated stage III patients. P53 and p27 expression was positively associated with beta-catenin overexpression and inversely associated with MSI. Cyclin D1 expression was positively associated with MSI and beta-catenin overexpression, and p21 expression was positively associated with MSI but not beta-catenin overexpression.
Findings from this large, prospective cohort study demonstrate that MSI screening status in colorectal cancer is an independent prognostic factor, but not in localized disease, and does not predict response to adjuvant chemotherapy. Beta-catenin overexpression was also associated with favourable outcome but not a treatment predictive factor. Associations of MSI and beta-catenin alterations with other investigative and clinicopathological factors were in line with the expected.
Virtual slides
The virtual slides for this article can be found here:
PMCID: PMC3599130  PMID: 23337059
17.  Long-term Outcome of Patients with Metastatic Breast Cancer Treated with High-Dose Chemotherapy and Transplantation of Purified Autologous Hematopoietic Stem Cells 
Metastatic breast cancer remains a major treatment challenge. The use of high-dose chemotherapy (HDCT) with rescue by autologous mobilized peripheral blood (MPB) is controversial, in part due to contamination of MPB by circulating tumor cells. CD34+Thy- 1+ selected hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) represent a graft source with a greater than 250,000-fold reduction in cancer cells. Here, we present the long-term outcome of a pilot study determining feasibility and engraftment using HDCT and purified HSC in patients with metastatic breast cancer. Twenty-two patients who had been treated with standard chemotherapy were enrolled into a phase I/II trial between 12/1996 to 02/1998, and underwent HDCT followed by rescue with CD34+Thy-1+ HSC isolated from autologous MPB. More than 12 years after the end of the study 23% (5/22) of HSC recipients are alive, 18% (4/22) free of recurrence with normal hematopoietic function. Median PFS was 16 months and median OS was 60 months. Retrospective comparison with 74 patients transplanted between 02/1995 and 06/1999 with the identical HDCT regimen but rescue with unmanipulated MPB show that 9% of patients are alive, and 7% without disease. Median PFS was 10 months and median OS was 28 months. In conclusion, cancer-depleted HSC following HDCT resulted in better than expected 12- 14 year PFS and OS in a cohort of metastatic breast cancer patients. These data prompt us to look once again at purified HSC transplantation in a protocol powered to test for efficacy in advanced stage breast cancer patients.
PMCID: PMC4113088  PMID: 21767515
18.  Clinical evaluation of CEA, CA19-9, CA72-4 and CA125 in gastric cancer patients with neoadjuvant chemotherapy 
In the clinical practice of neoadjuvant chemotherapy, response markers are very important. We aimed o investigate whether tumor markers CEA(carcino-embryonic antigen), CA19-9(carbohydrate antigen 19–9), CA72-4(carbohydrate antigen 72–4), and CA125(carbohydrate antigen 125) can be used to evaluate the response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy, and to evaluate the diagnosis and prognosis value of four tumor markers in the patients of gastric cancer.
A retrospective review was performed of 184 gastric cancer patients who underwent a 5-Fu, leucovorin, and oxaliplatin (FOLFOX) neoadjuvant chemotherapy regimen, followed by surgical treatment. Blood samples for CEA, CA19-9, CA72-4, and CA125 levels were taken from patients upon admission to the hospital and after neoadjuvant chemotherapy. Statistical analysis was performed to identify the clinical value of these tumor markers in predicting the survival and the response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy.
Median overall survival times of pretreatment CA19-9-positive and CA72-4-positive patients (14.0 +/−2.8 months and 14.8 +/−4.0 months, respectively) were significantly less than negative patients (32.5 +/−8.9 months and 34.0 +/−10.1 months, respectively) (P = 0.000 and P = 0.002, respectively). Pretreatment status of CA19-9 and CA72-4 were independent prognostic factors in gastric cancer patients (P = 0.029 and P = 0.008, respectively). Pretreatment CEA >50 ng/ml had a positive prediction value for clinical disease progression after neoadjuvant chemotherapy according to the ROC curve (AUC: 0.694, 95% CI: 0.517 to 0.871, P = 0.017). The decrease of tumor markers CEA, CA72-4, and CA125 was significant after neoadjuvant chemotherapy (P = 0.030, P = 0.010, and P = 0.009, respectively), especially in patients with disease control (including complete, partial clinical response, and stable disease) (P = 0.012, P = 0.020, and P = 0.025, respectively). A decrease in CA72-4 by more than 70% had a positive prediction value for pathologic response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy according to the ROC curve (AUC: 0.764, 95% CI: 0.584 to 0.945, P = 0.020).
Our results suggest that high preoperative serum levels of CA72-4 and CA19-9 are associated with higher risk of death, high pretreatment CEA levels (>50 ng/ml) may predict clinical disease progression after neoadjuvant chemotherapy, and a decrease (>70%) of CA72-4 may predict pathologic response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy.
PMCID: PMC4320462  PMID: 25543664
Gastric cancer; Neoadjuvant chemotherapy; CEA; CA19-9; CA72-4; CA125
19.  Autologous haematopoietic stem cell transplantation following high-dose chemotherapy for non-rhabdomyosarcoma soft tissue sarcomas: a Cochrane systematic review* 
BMJ Open  2014;4(7):e005033.
We conducted a systematic review to compare the efficacy and adverse events of autologous haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) following high-dose chemotherapy (HDCT) versus standard-dose chemotherapy (SDCT) in patients with locally advanced or metastatic non-rhabdomyosarcoma soft tissue sarcomas (NRSTS).
Patients were observed in hospital units specialised for cancer therapy.
The review evaluated 294 patients with 19 different subtypes of malignant NRSTS. The patients had a median age between 10 and 46 years (range 2–65) and were mostly men.
Primary and secondary outcome measure
The planned and measured primary outcomes were overall survival and treatment-related mortality. The planned and measured secondary outcomes were progression-free survival, grade 3–4 non-haematological toxicity and secondary neoplasia. Other secondary outcomes including disease-free survival, event-free survival and health-related quality of life were not reported.
We included 62 studies reporting on 294 transplanted patients. We identified 1 randomised controlled trial (RCT) with 38 transplanted and 45 non-transplanted patients and judged a low risk of bias. We further identified 61 single-arm studies with 256 transplanted patients. Overall survival in the RCT was reported not statistically significantly different between autologous HSCT following HDCT versus SDCT. The HR was 1.26 (95% CI 0.70 to 2.29; p=0.44) and the point estimates at 3 years were 32.7% vs 49.4%. Data from single-arm studies were used to extract data on adverse events. Treatment-related mortality was reported in 5.1% (15 of 294) transplanted patients.
Overall survival in patients with locally advanced or metastatic NRSTS was not statistically different after autologous HSCT following HDCT compared with SDCT in a single RCT with a total of 83 patients. No other comparative study was available. The proportion of adverse events among the transplanted patients is not clear.
PMCID: PMC4120440  PMID: 25079925
20.  Microsatellite instability in colorectal cancer is associated with local lymphocyte infiltration and low frequency of distant metastases 
British Journal of Cancer  2005;92(9):1746-1753.
Colorectal carcinomas (CRCs) with high microsatellite instability (MSI-H) share clinicopathological features distinctly different from their microsatellite stable (MSS) counterparts. Unlike MSS cancers, MSI-H CRCs occur predominantly in the right-sided colon and are often characterised by a strong lymphocyte infiltration. A poor differentiation pattern is found in most MSI-H CRCs, even though patients with MSI-H carcinomas seem to have a significantly longer survival after surgical resection. To clarify which factors contribute to the obvious paradoxon of a more favourable prognosis of MSI tumours, several clinical and histopathological features as well as the microsatellite status were evaluated in 120 colorectal cancer cases fulfilling clinical criteria (Bethesda) indicative for familial colorectal cancer. Microsatellite instablity status and lymphocyte infiltration were related to tumour stage and patients' follow-up. Statistical analysis confirmed well-known relations, such as enhanced lymphocyte infiltration accompanied by Crohn's like reaction (CLR) in MSI-H cancers (CLR+ in 27 out of 47 MSI-H vs 14 out of 71 MSS CRCs, P<0.001). However, after stratification for depth of local invasion and penetration of the primary tumour, T3 tumours displaying MSI had a significantly lower rate of distant metastases (M1 in four out of 35 MSI-H vs 20 out of 41 MSS CRCs, P<0.001). A similar tendency was observed for CLR-positive CRCs (M1 in six out of 29 CLR+ vs 17 out of 45 CLR− CRCs, P=0.13). In a logistic regression model, the MSI-H phenotype and the presence of CLR were independent predictors of a low UICC stage (P=0.006 and 0.04, respectively). These data, together with the recent definition of highly immunogenic neo-antigens expressed in MSI-H tumour cells, suggest that MSI-H CRCs elicit a protective host response that may prevent metastasis formation.
PMCID: PMC2362037  PMID: 15856045
colorectal cancer; Crohn's like reaction; microsatellite instability; lymphocyte infiltration; organ metastasis; hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC)
21.  Loss of heterozygosity and microsatellite instabilities of fragile histidine triad gene in gastric carcinoma 
AIM: To detect the loss of heterozygosity (LOH) and microsatellite instabilities (MSI) of fragile histidine triad (FHIT) gene in gastric carcinoma and to study their association with the clinical pathological characteristics of gastric carcinoma.
METHODS: LOH and MSI of FHIT gene were detected at four microsatellite loci D3Sl3H, D3S4l03, D3Sl48l and D3S1234 using PCR in matched normal and cancerous tissues from 50 patients with primary gastric cancer.
RESULTS: The average frequency of LOH and MSI of FHIT gene in gastric cancer was 32.4% and 26.4% respectively. LOH and MSI of FHIT gene in gastric cancer had no association with histological, Borrmann, and Lauren’s classification. LOH of FHIT gene in gastric cancer was related to invasive depth. The frequency of FHIT LOH in gastric cancer with serosa-penetration was obviously higher than that in gastric cancer without serosa-penetration (73.5% vs 37.5%, P < 0.05). MSI of FHIT gene in gastric cancer was associated with the lymph node metastasis. The frequency of MSI in gastric cancer without lymph node metastasis was significantly higher than that in gastric cancer with lymph node metastasis (66.7% vs 34.3%, P < 0.05).
CONCLUSION: LOH of FHIT gene is correlated with invasive depth of gastric carcinoma. MSI of FHIT gene is correlated with lymph node metastases. LOH and MSI of FHIT gene play an important role in carcinogenesis of gastric cancer.
PMCID: PMC4087473  PMID: 16773697
Gastric cancer; FHIT gene; Microsatellite instabilities
22.  Bax Expression Is Predictive of Favorable Clinical Outcome in Chemonaive Advanced Gastric Cancer Patients Treated with Capecitabine, Oxaliplatin, and Irinotecan Regimen1 
Translational Oncology  2012;5(3):155-159.
OBJECTIVE: Bax protein is a key mediator of apoptosis, and it might be related to chemosensitivity. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the prognostic role of Bax in patients with advanced gastric cancer treated with triplet chemotherapy COI regimen (capecitabine, oxaliplatin, and irinotecan). METHODS: Pretreatment tissue blocks were available for 23 consecutive patients, selected for good performance status (ECOG ≤ 1) and consenting for treatment with first-line COI at a single institution. Bax levels were classified as positive or negative by immunohistochemistry (bax N20; Santa Cruz Biotechnology) and related to outcome in terms of response rate, progression-free survival, and overall survival. RESULTS: Bax-negative and -positive samples were 26% and 74%, respectively. Bax expression was associated with significantly higher response rate (87% vs 33%), progression-free survival (8.7 vs 4.9 months, P = .016), and overall survival (23.8 vs 12.7 months, P = .025). In multivariate analysis including Bax and performance status, low Bax independently predicted worse outcome, along with suboptimal performance status. CONCLUSIONS: In advanced gastric cancer, Bax expression was related to clinical benefit with COI regimen. Whether Bax is a prognostic or mixed prognostic/predictive factor warrants prospective confirmation. It is to be defined if Bax predicts sensitivity to platinum analogs or to whatever chemotherapy regimen.
PMCID: PMC3384269  PMID: 22741034
23.  High Frequency of Microsatellite Instability in Intestinal-type Gastric Cancer in Korean Patients 
Although there have been some reports on microsatellite alterations in gastric cancer, findings are inconsistent regarding the associations between histological classification and microsatellite instability (MSI). In the present study, we attempted to determine whether Lauren's histological subtypes are related with MSI status.
Paraffin-embedded tissue samples from 14 diffuse-type and 14 intestinal-type gastric adenocarcinomas were matched up according to patient gender and age. Mononucleotide markers (BAT25 and BAT26) and dinucleotide markers (D2S123, D5S346, and D17S250) were used for MSI analyses. Microsatellite genotypes were categorized in terms of high MSI incidence (MSI-H, >30% positive marker) or low MSI incidence (MSI-L, <30% positive marker). Losses of hMLH1 and hMSH2 protein expression were immunohistochemically studied.
MSI-H was observed in 11 cases (78%) of the 14 intestinal-type cases as compared to 3 (21%) of the 14 diffuse-type cases (p=0.007). In MSI-H tumors, 10 cases (71%) showed losses of hMLH1 protein expression, while 2 cases (14%) in MSI-L tumors showed losses of hMLH1 protein expression (p=0.006).
MSI-H tumors are more frequently found in intestinal-type gastric cancer, which suggests the possibility that there are different pathogenic pathways in gastric carcinogenesis according to histologic type.
PMCID: PMC3891379  PMID: 16134765
Gastric cancer; Histology; Microsatellite instability
24.  Chemotherapy induced microsatellite instability and loss of heterozygosity in chromosomes 2, 5, 10, and 17 in solid tumor patients 
Cancer Cell International  2014;14(1):118.
The inevitable side effects of the currently used chemotherapy are associated with serious syndromes. Genotoxic effects and consequent genetic instability may play an important role in these syndromes. The aim of the study was to evaluate chemotherapy-related microsatellite instability (MSI), loss of heterozygosity (LOH), and loss of mismatch repair (MMR) expression in solid tumor patients.
Samples were collected from 117 de novo patients with solid tumors of different origins. Specimens, taken pre- and post-treatment, were screened for MSI and LOH in 10 microsatellite sequences in blood, and expression of five MMR proteins were analyzed in cancer tissues using immunohistochemistry. Statistical analysis included the use of; Fisher’s exact test, Chi Square, and an inter-rater reliability test using Cohen’s kappa coefficient.
Microsatellite analysis showed that 66.7% of the patients had MSI, including 23.1% high-positive MSI and 43.6% low-positive MSI. A large portion (41%) of the patients exhibited LOH in addition to MSI. MSI and LOH were detected in seven loci in which incidence rates ranged from 3.8% positive for Bat-26 to 34.6% positive for Tp53-Alu. Immunohistochemistry revealed that human mutL homolog 1 (hMLH1) expression was deficient in 29.1% of the patients, whereas 18.8%, 23.9%, 13.4%, and 9.7% were deficient for human mutS homolog 2 (hMSH2), P53, human mutS homolog 6 (hMSH6) and human post-meiotic segregation increased 2 (hPMS2), respectively. There was a significant correlation between MSI and LOH incidence in Tp53-Alu, Mfd41, and APC with low or deficient expression of hMLH1, hMSH2, and P53. A significant association between MSI and LOH, and incidence of secondary tumors was also evident.
The negative correlation between MMR expression, MSI, and LOH and increased resistance to anti-cancer drugs and development of secondary cancers demonstrates a useful aid in early detection of potential chemotherapy-related side-effects. The diagnostic value demonstrated in our earlier study on breast cancer patients was confirmed for other solid tumors.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12935-014-0118-4) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4260186  PMID: 25493073
Chemotherapy; Genetic instability; Microsatellites; Mismatch repair; Secondary tumors
25.  Reduced-dose craniospinal radiotherapy followed by tandem high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell transplantation in patients with high-risk medulloblastoma 
Neuro-Oncology  2012;15(3):352-359.
We assessed the feasibility and effectiveness of reduced-dose craniospinal (CS) radiotherapy (RT) followed by tandem high-dose chemotherapy and autologous stem cell transplantation (HDCT/autoSCT) in reducing late adverse effects without jeopardizing survival among children with high-risk medulloblastoma (MB).
From October 2005 through September 2010, twenty consecutive children aged >3 years with high-risk MB (presence of metastasis and/or postoperative residual tumor >1.5 cm2) were assigned to receive 2 cycles of pre-RT chemotherapy, CSRT (23.4 or 30.6 Gy) combined with local RT to the primary site (total 54.0 Gy), and 4 cycles of post-RT chemotherapy followed by tandem HDCT/autoSCT. Carboplatin-thiotepa-etoposide and cyclophosphamide-melphalan regimens were used for the first and second HDCT, respectively.
Of 20 patients with high-risk MB, 17 had metastatic disease and 3 had a postoperative residual tumor >1.5 cm2 without metastasis. The tumor relapsed/progressed in 4 patients, and 2 patients died of toxicities during the second HDCT/autoSCT. Therefore, 14 patients remained event-free at a median follow-up of 46 months (range, 23−82) from diagnosis. The probability of 5-year event-free survival was 70.0% ± 10.3% for all patients and 70.6% ± 11.1% for patients with metastases. Late adverse effects evaluated at a median of 36 months (range, 12−68) after tandem HDCT/autoSCT were acceptable.
In children with high-risk MB, CSRT dose might be reduced when accompanied by tandem HDCT/autoSCT without jeopardizing survival. However, longer follow-up is needed to evaluate whether the benefits of reduced-dose CSRT outweigh the long-term risks of tandem HDCT/autoSCT.
PMCID: PMC3578484  PMID: 23258845
autologous stem cell transplantation; high-dose chemotherapy; late effect; medulloblastoma; radiotherapy

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