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J Clin Oncol. 2004 Jul 1;22(13):2623-34.

Tumor karyotype predicts clinical outcome in colorectal cancer patients.

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Department of Genetics, G. Papanikolaou Research Center, Saint Savas Oncological Hospital of Athens, Greece.



To investigate the prognostic value of the overall karyotypic features and specific chromosome aberrations in colorectal cancer (CRC).


Cytogenetic features of 150 primary CRCs investigated at the time of surgery were correlated with patient survival by univariate and multivariate analyses, using classical clinicopathologic parameters as covariates.


In univariate analysis, in addition to tumor grade and clinical stage, structural aberrations as well as rearrangements of chromosomes 8 and 16 were significantly correlated with shorter overall survival. Karyotypic complexity, rearrangements of chromosomes 8 and 16, and loss of chromosome 4 were significantly correlated with shorter disease-free survival. In multivariate analysis, in addition to tumor grade, the type of chromosome aberrations (structural or numerical), ploidy, and loss of chromosome 18 came across as independent prognostic factors in the group of all patients. In the subset of patients with stage I and II carcinomas, none of the clinicopathologic variables could independently predict patient survival, whereas the presence of structural chromosomal aberrations was the only independent predictor of poor prognosis. In the subset of patients with stage III carcinomas, the presence of structural changes of chromosome 8 was a stronger independent predictor of prognosis than was tumor grade.


Cytogenetic tumor features are valuable predictors of prognosis in CRC patients. The tumor karyotype should therefore be taken into account in the clinical management of patients with this disease, especially for patients having cancers of the early or intermediate stages I, II, and III.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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