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Clin Cancer Res. 2003 Feb;9(2):613-8.

Predictive value of the EphA2 receptor tyrosine kinase in lung cancer recurrence and survival.

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  • 1MedImmune, Inc., Gaithersburg, Maryland 20878, USA.



Underestimation of disease severity is a major problem confronting the successful clinical management of non-small cell lung cancer. Recent advances in molecular biological substaging may provide an opportunity to identify those patients with the most aggressive forms of the disease, but there is a continuing need for accurate markers of disease relapse and survival.


In our present study, immunohistochemical analyses of a retrospective database of pathologic specimens were used to demonstrate that the EphA2 receptor kinase is frequently overexpressed in NSCLC.


Initial presentation with high levels of EphA2 predicts subsequent survival, overall relapse, and site of relapse. Specifically, high levels of EphA2 in the primary tumor predict brain metastases, whereas low levels of EphA2 relate to disease-free survival or contralateral lung metastasis.


These data suggest that EphA2 may provide a molecular marker to identify and predict patients who have isolated brain metastases. Moreover, the high levels of EphA2 in lung cancer may provide an opportunity for therapeutic targeting.

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