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Int J Colorectal Dis. 2009 Nov;24(11):1261-9. doi: 10.1007/s00384-009-0755-6. Epub 2009 Jul 11.

Increased spontaneous apoptosis, but not survivin expression, is associated with histomorphologic response to neoadjuvant chemoradiation in rectal cancer.

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1
Department of Academic Surgery, St James's Hospital, Dublin, Ireland.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Survivin has been shown to be an important mediator of cellular radioresistance in vitro. This study aims to compare survivin expression and apoptosis to histomorphologic responses to neoadjuvant radiochemotherapy (RCT) in rectal cancer.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Thirty-six pre-treatment biopsies were studied. Survivin mRNA and protein expression plus TUNEL staining for apoptosis was performed. Response to treatment was assessed using a 5-point tumour regression grade.

RESULTS:

Survivin expression was not found to be predictive of response to RCT (p = NS). In contrast, spontaneous apoptosis was significantly (p = 0.0051) associated with subsequent response to RCT. However, no association between survivin expression and levels of apoptosis could be identified.

CONCLUSIONS:

This in vivo study failed to support in vitro studies showing an association between survivin and response to chemotherapy and radiation therapy. These results caution against the translation of the in vitro properties of survivin into a clinical setting.

PMID:
19593573
DOI:
10.1007/s00384-009-0755-6
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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