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J Surg Res. 2012 Jul;176(1):154-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jss.2011.09.043. Epub 2011 Oct 12.

Molecular profiling of synchronous and metachronous cancers of the pancreas reveal molecular mimicry between samples from the same patient.

Author information

1
Department of Surgery, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19107, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA) is rarely a survivable disease. In rare cases, separate synchronous tumors are discovered at the time of resection, while in others, patients present with a metachronous cancer after prior surgical resection. Studying molecular markers of synchronous and metachronous lesions may aid to clarify the biology of this often deadly disease.

METHODS:

Two patients presented with synchronous tumors (each one with a tumor in the pancreatic head/neck and the other in the tail, designated patients A and B). An additional patient (patient C) underwent an R0 resection for PDA of the head and recurred 1.5 y later with PDA in the tail. Genomic DNA was laser capture microdissected (LCM) from the tumor and molecular analysis was performed. K-ras status and loss of heterozygosity (LOH) were determined from multiple specimens for each case.

RESULTS:

All samples from each patient harbored identical K-ras mutations. In patient A, the tumor at the head of the pancreas had more clonal genetic instability as reflected by LOH analysis over multiple LCM samples. Patient B had more genetic instability in the tail lesion compared with the neck. Patient C had virtually the identical molecular profile in both tumors, supporting the notion that both tumors were related.

CONCLUSION:

We conclude that the synchronous and metachronous tumors likely are initiated from identical precursor lesions and/or events (i.e., K-ras mutations). Future studies will need to investigate if these tumors will respond similarly to adjuvant therapies targeted against the clonal molecular events in the tumor.

PMID:
22118834
DOI:
10.1016/j.jss.2011.09.043
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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