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Oncol Lett. 2017 May;13(5):3025-3031. doi: 10.3892/ol.2017.5807. Epub 2017 Mar 6.

Evaluation of a novel approach to circulating tumor cell isolation for cancer gene panel analysis in patients with breast cancer.

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Cytogen, Inc., Songpa-gu, Seoul 138-961, Republic of Korea.
Department of Surgery, Asan Medical Center Affiliated to The University of Uslan College of Medicine, Songpa-gu, Seoul 138-736, Republic of Korea.
Macrogen, Inc., Geumcheon-gu, Seoul 08511, Republic of Korea.


Liquid biopsy isolation of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) allows the genomic analysis of CTCs, which is useful in the determination of personalized cancer therapy. In the present study, CTCs from patients with breast cancer were enriched and successfully analyzed using cancer gene panel analysis. Blood samples from 11 patients with breast cancer were collected and CTCs enriched for using size-based filtration. The enriched CTCs were analyzed using immunofluorescence staining with antibodies directed against epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM) and cluster of differentiation 45. The genomic DNA of CTCs was extracted, amplified and 50 genes screened for mutations using the Ion AmpliSeq™ Cancer Hotspot Panel v2. EpCAM staining detected CTCs in 10/11 patients and the average CTC count was 3.9 in 5 ml blood. The average purity of enriched CTCs was 14.2±29.4% and the average amount of amplified DNA was 28.6±11.9 µg. Catalogue Of Somatic Mutations In Cancer mutations were detected in the CTCs and included IDH2, TP53, NRAS, IDH1, PDGFRA, HRAS, STK11, EGFR, PTEN, MLH1, PIK3CA, CDKN2A, KIT and SMARCB1. In conclusion, a novel size-based filtration approach for the isolation of CTCs was evaluated and successfully applied for the genomic analysis of CTCs from patients with breast cancer.


breast cancer; cancer gene panel analysis; circulating tumor cells; liquid biopsy

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