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Ymittos Athens, Greece

Kotoula V.,Aristotle University of Thessaloniki | Kotoula V.,Hellenic Foundation for Cancer Research | Chatzopoulos K.,Hellenic Foundation for Cancer Research | Lakis S.,Hellenic Foundation for Cancer Research | And 18 more authors.
Oncotarget | Year: 2016

Background: Tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) are considered in the prognosis of breast cancer (BC) patients. Here, we investigated the prognostic/predictive effect of TILs in patients treated in the frame of four prospective trials with adjuvant anthracycline-based chemotherapy in the pre- and post-trastuzumab era. Methods: TILs density was histologically assessed as percentage of stromal area on whole routine sections of 2613 BC (1563 Luminal A/B; 477 Luminal HER2; 246 HER2-enriched; 327 triple negative [TNBC]) and were evaluated as high/low at three cut-offs (c/o; 50% [lymphocytic predominance, LP], 35% and 25%), in separate training and validation sets. Results: High TILs were present in 3.5%, 6.5% and 11.5% of all tumors, using the 50%, 35% and 25% c/o, respectively. TILs status did not interact with BC subtypes or trastuzumab treatment. LPBC patient outcome was not affected by nodal status, while high TILs were favorable in TNBC with unfavorable nodal status. When adjusted for standard clinicopathological parameters and treatment, high TILs independently predicted for favorable outcome, e.g., disease-free survival with the 35% c/o in the entire cohort (HR = 0.44, 95% CI 0.28-0.69, p < 0.001) and in specific subtypes. Conclusions: High TILs tumors, especially LPBC seem worthy validating as a separate entity of favorable prognosis in breast cancer.

Briasoulis E.,University of Ioannina | Aravantinos G.,Agii Anargiri Cancer Hospital | Kouvatseas G.,Health Data Specialists Ltd | Pappas P.,University of Ioannina | And 12 more authors.
BMC Cancer | Year: 2013

Background: Metronomic chemotherapy is considered an anti-angiogenic therapy that involves chronic administration of low-dose chemotherapy at regular short intervals. We investigated the optimal metronomic dose of oral vinorelbine when given as monotherapy in patients with metastatic cancer.Methods: Patients with recurrent metastatic breast (BC), prostate (PC) or non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and adequate organ functions were randomly assigned to 30, 40 or 50 mg vinorelbine, taken orally three times a week. Treatment continued until disease progression, unacceptable toxicity, withdrawal of consent or maximum 24 months. Primary endpoint was time-to-treatment failure (TTF) and secondary were progression-free survival (PFS), toxicity, changes in blood concentrations of angiogenesis-associated biomarkers and pharmacokinetics.Results: Seventy-three patients were enrolled. Four-month TTF rate did not differ between the three arms: 25.9% (11.1%-46.2% 95% Confidence Interval), 33.3% (15.6%-55.3%) and 18.2% (5.2%-40.3%) for the 30 mg, 40 mg and 50 mg arms (p-value = 0.56). Objective response was seen in 2 patients with NSCLC (treated at 30 and 50 mg respectively), one with BC (at 40 m g) and one with PC (at 50 mg) and lasted from 4 to 100 weeks, with maximum response duration achieved at 50 mg. Adverse events were mild and negligible and did not differ between the three arms. Blood levels of vinorelbine reached steady state from the second week of treatment and mean values for the 30, 40 and 50 mg were respectively 1.8 ng/ml (SD 1.10), 2.2 ng/ml (SD 1.87) and 2.6 ng/ml (SD 0.69). Low pre-treatment blood concentrations of FGF2 and IL8 predicted favorable response to therapy (p values 0.02 and 0.006, respectively), while high levels of TEK gene transcript predicted treatment resistance.Conclusions: Considering the antitumor activity and response duration, the negligible toxicity of the highest dose investigated and the lack of drug accumulation over time, we suggest that 50 mg given three times a week is the optimal dose for metronomic oral vinorelbine. Further investigation of metronomic oral vinorelbine (MOVIN) at this dose is warranted in combination with conventional chemotherapy regimens and targeted therapies.Trial registration: Clinicaltrials.gov NCT00278070. © 2013 Briasoulis et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Psyrri A.,National and Kapodistrian University of Athens | Kotoula V.,Aristotle University of Thessaloniki | Fountzilas E.,Aristotle University of Thessaloniki | Alexopoulou Z.,Health Data Specialists Ltd | And 9 more authors.
Oral Oncology | Year: 2014

Objectives We sought to determine the prognostic significance of the Wnt signaling pathway in operable squamous cell carcinoma of the larynx. Materials and methods In an annotated cohort of 289 operable laryngeal cancers we evaluated the prognostic impact of E-cadherin, P-cadherin and β-catenin protein expression with immunohistochemistry, as well as the mRNA expression of 7 key effectors of the Wnt pathway including secreted frizzled-related protein 4 (SFRP4), SNAI2 (SLUG) and WNT5A with qPCR (relative quantification [RQ]). Results Using median immunoreactive scores as a pre-defined cut-off, patients whose tumors overexpressed both cytoplasmic E-cadherin and β-catenin experienced longer median OS as compared to those whose tumors overexpressed β-catenin only (median OS 124 vs. 72 months, p = 0.0301) and patients whose tumors overexpressed both cytoplasmic and membranous E-cadherin experienced longer DFS as compared to those whose tumors overexpressed cytoplasmic E-cadherin only (median 118 vs. 91 months, p = 0.0106). Upon hierarchical clustering of SFRP4, SNAI2 and WNT5A RQ values, profiles including co-expression of all 3 genes but also profiles with under-expression of SNAI2 and WNT5A were associated with worse outcome as compared to profiles not related to the Wnt pathway. In multivariate analysis, clustering was an independent predictor for DFS (p = 0.0221) and OS (p = 0.0077). Conclusion We identified gene expression profiles and IHC patterns associated with aberrant Wnt signaling conferring aggressive clinical behavior in operable squamous cell carcinoma of the larynx. Prospective validation of these results will determine whether targeting the Wnt pathway merits investigation in this disease.

Razis E.,Hygeia Hospital | Pentheroudakis G.,University of Ioannina | Rigakos G.,Hygeia Hospital | Bobos M.,Aristotle University of Thessaloniki | And 20 more authors.
Journal of Cancer Research and Clinical Oncology | Year: 2014

Introduction: Cetuximab is a monoclonal epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-targeting antibody, used in the treatment of colon cancer. KRAS mutation status is strongly predictive of cetuximab efficacy, but more predictive factors are needed for better patient selection. PTEN is a downstream inhibitor of the EGFR pathway and has been evaluated as a predictive factor of cetuximab efficacy in colorectal cancer. Patients and methods: Formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tumor tissue samples were collected from 226 patients with advanced or metastatic colorectal cancer that had been treated with cetuximab. Clinical information was collected retrospectively from the patients' medical records. After central evaluation, 147 cases with adequate material were eligible for further evaluation. EGFR and PTEN status was evaluated with immunohistochemistry (IHC) and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). Data were associated with cetuximab treatment outcome. Additional analysis was performed with previously published data on PIK3CA, BRAF and KRAS mutation status and EGFR ligand amphiregulin (AREG) and epiregulin intratumoral mRNA expression levels. PIK3CA mutation status and PTEN protein expression were also analyzed as a single complex parameter, to evaluate the predictive value of PI3K/PTEN axis dysfunction as one entity. Results: Analysis showed a borderline association of overall response rate (ORR) and time to progression (TTP) with EGFR protein overexpression by IHC (p = 0.059 and p = 0.057, respectively) and a positive association of EGFR gain by FISH (found in only five cases) with longer TTP (p = 0.026). No association was found between ORR or TTP and PTEN IHC or FISH status. Comparative analysis with previously published data showed that PTEN protein expression is associated with longer TTP in patients with wild-type (WT) KRAS (p = 0.036) and especially in the ones with elevated AREG levels (p = 0.046), as well as in patients with both KRAS and BRAF WT (p = 0.019). Patients with both PIK3CA WT and PTEN protein expression had significantly longer TTP (p = 0.010) versus all others, in the absence of BRAF and KRAS mutations, a finding which persisted in the KRAS WT/AREG high subgroup (p = 0.046). Conclusions: In this cetuximab-treated colorectal cancer population, EGFR gain was associated with better outcome and PTEN protein expression with longer TTP in KRAS WT, KRAS WT/AREG high and KRAS/BRAF WT subpopulations. Cetuximab efficacy is greater with intact and activated EGFR signaling, without activating mutations of KRAS/BRAF and in the presence of preserved PTEN inhibitory activity upon the PI3K/AKT pathway. These results reflect a solid biological rationale and warrant further evaluation of the predictive role of PTEN in prospective studies. © 2014 Springer-Verlag.

Linardou H.,Metropolitan Hospital | Kalogeras K.T.,Aristotle University of Thessaloniki | Kalogeras K.T.,Translational Research Section | Kronenwett R.,Siemens AG | And 10 more authors.
Breast Cancer Research | Year: 2012

Introduction: The main prognostic variables in early breast cancer are tumor size, histological grade, estrogen receptor/progesterone receptor (ER/PgR) status, number of positive nodes and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) status. The present study evaluated the prognostic and/or predictive value of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) family members in high-risk early breast cancer patients treated with adjuvant chemo-hormonotherapy.Methods: RNA was isolated from 308 formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded primary tumor samples from breast cancer patients enrolled in the HE10/97 trial, evaluating adjuvant dose-dense sequential chemotherapy with epirubicin followed by cyclophosphamide, methotrexate, fluorouracil (CMF) with or without paclitaxel (E-T-CMF versus E-CMF). A fully automated method based on magnetic beads was applied for RNA extraction, followed by one-step quantitative RT-PCR for mRNA analysis of VEGF-A, -B, -C and vascular endothelial growth factor receptor (VEGFR) 1, 2, 3.Results: With a median follow-up of 8 years, 109 patients (35%) developed a relapse and 80 patients (26%) died. In high VEGF-C and VEGFR1 mRNA expressing tumors, ER/PgR-negative tumors (Fisher's exact test, P = 0.001 and P = 0.021, respectively) and HER2-positive tumors (P <0.001 and P = 0.028, respectively) were more frequent than in low VEGF-C and VEGFR1 expressing tumors, respectively. From the VEGF family members evaluated, high VEGFR1 mRNA expression (above the 75thpercentile) emerged as a significant negative prognostic factor for overall survival (OS; hazard ratio (HR) = 1.60, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.01 to 2.55, Wald's P = 0.047) and disease-free survival (DFS; HR = 1.67, 95% CI: 1.13 to 2.48, P = 0.010), when adjusting for treatment group. High VEGF-C mRNA expression was predictive for benefit from adjuvant treatment with paclitaxel (E-T-CMF arm) for OS (test for interaction, Wald's P = 0.038), while in multivariate analysis the interaction of VEGF-C with taxane treatment was significant for both OS (Wald's P = 0.019) and DFS (P = 0.041) and continuous VEGF-B mRNA expression values for OS (P = 0.019).Conclusions: The present study reports, for the first time, that VEGF-C mRNA overexpression, as assessed by qRT-PCR, has a strong predictive value in high-risk early breast cancer patients undergoing adjuvant paclitaxel-containing treatment. Further studies are warranted to validate the prognostic and/or predictive value of VEGF-B, VEGF-C and VEGFR1 in patients treated with adjuvant therapies and to reveal which members of the VEGF family could possibly be useful markers in identifying patients who will benefit most from anti-VEGF strategies.Trial registration: Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ANZCTR) ACTRN12611000506998. © 2012 Linardou et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

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