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British Journal of Cancer press notice

July 31, 2018

Please download the papers below or contact the BJC press office for the full paper or with any other questions on 0203 469 8300, out of hours, 07050 264 059 or bjcpress@cancer.org.uk. Scientists can be directly contacted regarding media interviews using the contact details provided.

Please reference the British Journal of Cancer in any media activity.

Paper: Cardiovascular disease incidence after internal mammary chain irradiation and anthracycline-based chemotherapy for breast cancer
Corresponding author: Naomi Boekel
Telephone: +31205126292
E-mail: n.boekel@nki.nl

Author summary: Both radiotherapy and anthracycline-based chemotherapy are commonly used and highly effective breast cancer treatments. Unfortunately, they have also been associated with increased cardiovascular disease (CVD) risks. We studied the separate and combined effects of various treatments and established cardiovascular risk factors on the long-term risks of different CVDs in 14,645 breast cancer patients.

During 1970-2009, especially irradiation of the lymph nodes behind the sternum (IMC-irradiation) exposed the heart to high heart doses. This type of radiation is associated with ~2-fold increased rates of different CVDs compared to women receiving the lowest cardiac doses. In patients with an established cardiovascular risk factor, 20-year cumulative incidence of ischemic heart disease is 11% in patients with IMC-irradiation versus 6% in those without. Anthracyclines are associated with a four-fold increased heart failure rate, and combined with IMC-irradiation, a substantial, nine-fold increased rate was observed.

Current radiation techniques expose the heart to lower doses, and radiation-associated CVD risks are hence expected to be lower in patients treated today.

Post embargo link: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41416-018-0159-x

DOI: s41416-018-0159-x

Paper: The value of using the faecal immunochemical test in general practice on patients presenting with non-alarm symptoms of colorectal cancer
Corresponding author: Jakob Søgaard Juul, MD, PhD
Telephone: 0045 61777404
E-mail: jsjuul.feap@outlook.dk

Author summary: The vast majority of individuals with colorectal cancer (CRC) are diagnosed via the general practitioner (GP). One of the major challenges is that about half of these patients present with vague and non-specific symptoms that do not raise suspicion of CRC. This makes it difficult for the GP to discover the cancer early. The present study is the first to investigate the use of a safe, low-cost faecal immunochemical test (FIT) in patients presenting with non-alarm symptoms of CRC in general practice. The results suggest that the FIT may be used in this patient population to detect CRC and other serious bowel diseases in primary care and that the stage distribution of detected CRC by this method may be favourable. The findings are of importance in a realistic diagnostic work-up of patients with non-alarm symptoms of CRC and it reveals a possible diagnostic supplement in general practice.

Post embargo link: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41416-018-0178-7

DOI: s41416-018-0178-7

Paper: Detection of Circulating Tumor Cell Clusters in Human Glioblastoma
Corresponding author: Prof Nicola Aceto
Telephone: +41-61-207-0773
E-mail: nicola.aceto@unibas.ch

Author summary: Human glioblastoma (GBM) is a highly aggressive malignant brain cancer. Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) are cancer cells that detach from a solid tumor lesion and enter the bloodstream, in the form of single CTCs or multicellular clusters (CTC clusters). Individual CTCs are sporadically found in GBM patients, yet, it has been unclear whether CTC clusters are generated in this disease and whether they can bypass the physical hurdle of the blood-brain barrier.

When analyzing the blood of 13 GBM patients, we observed CTC clusters at multiple sampling time-points in a patient with pleomorphism and extensive necrosis. DNA sequencing of these GBM CTC clusters highlighted alterations in 58 cancer-associated genes, many of which were also mutated in cells within the primary GBM tumor, but non-mutated in healthy cells from the same patient.

Thus, our findings represent the first evidence of the presence of CTC clusters in GBM, suggesting that clustered cancer cells are able to bypass the blood-brain barrier.

Post embargo link: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41416-018-0186-7

DOI: s41416-018-0186-7
-end-
The British Journal of Cancer is editorially independent of Cancer Research UK. The BJC is one of the most-cited general cancer journals, publishing significant advances in translational and clinical cancer research. It also publishes high-quality reviews and thought-provoking comment on all aspects of cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatment. The BJC is owned by Cancer Research UK and published by Springer Nature.

Cancer Research UK

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