Gastric Cancer Cell Detection in Peritoneal Washing: Cytology Versus RT-PCR for CEA Transcripts

Department of Anatomical & Cellular Pathology, Prince of Wales Hospital, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, N.T., Hong Kong.
Diagnostic Molecular Pathology (Impact Factor: 1.86). 06/2003; 12(2):88-95. DOI: 10.1097/00019606-200306000-00004
Source: PubMed


This study investigates the sensitivity and specificity of cytology, qualitative, and real-time RT-PCR methods in free cancer cell detection of peritoneal washing from gastric cancer patients. Peritoneal washings were collected from 65 gastric cancer patients for routine cytology and total RNA extraction for qualitative and real-time RT-PCR for CEA. The sensitivity and false-positive rate was 51.1%, 0% for cytology, 48.9% and 5% for qualitative RT-PCR for CEA, and 42.5% and 5% for real-time RT-PCR for CEA. The qualitative and real time RT-PCR results show high concordance rate (89.7%). The highest sensitivity was obtained by the combination of cytology with qualitative RT-PCR for CEA (70.2%). RT-PCR results were positive in 63.6% of cytologic "atypia" cases. Combination of cytology and either of the RT-PCR methods resulted in significantly higher sensitivity than any one of the three methods alone (P < 0.05). There was no definite advantage of the real-time RT-PCR over the conventional RT-PCR.

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    • "However, to apply this modality, selection of patients who are at high risk for peritoneal recurrence is crucial. Although the precise mechanism driving peritoneal recurrence remains unclear, the presence of malignant cells in the peritoneum at the time of surgery can lead to peritoneal recurrence.6,7 Therefore, examination of peritoneal fluids has emerged as an option for identifying patients who are at high risk for peritoneal recurrence after curative resection. "
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    ABSTRACT: The role of peritoneal washing cytology in determining further treatment strategies after surgery for gastric cancer remains unclear. One reason for this is the fact that optimal procedures to increase the accuracy of predicting peritoneal metastasis have not been established. The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of cytology using samples harvested from two different abdominal cavity sites during gastric cancer surgery. We prospectively recruited 108 patients who were clinically diagnosed with locally advanced gastric cancer (higher than cT1 stage disease). Peritoneal washing fluids were collected from the pouch of Douglas and the subphrenic area. Patients were prospectively followed up for 2 years to determine the recurrence and survival rates. Thirty-three patients dropped out of the study for various reasons, so 75 patients were included in the final analysis. Seven patients (9.3%) showed positive cytology findings, of whom, three showed peritoneal recurrence. Tumor size was the only factor associated with positive cytology findings (P=0.037). The accuracy and specificity of cytology for predicting peritoneal recurrence were 90.1% and 94.2%, respectively, whereas the sensitivity was 50.0%. The survival rate did not differ between patients with positive cytology findings and those with negative cytology findings (P=0.081). Peritoneal washing cytology using samples harvested from two different sites in the abdominal cavity was not able to predict peritoneal recurrence or survival in gastric cancer patients. Further studies will be required to determine whether peritoneal washing cytology during gastric cancer surgery is a meaningful procedure.
    Journal of Gastric Cancer 03/2014; 14(1):23-31. DOI:10.5230/jgc.2014.14.1.23
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    • "CEA, originally described as a tumor-associated colon cancer antigen, was cloned in 1987 and is now recognized as a member of the immunoglobulin protein superfamily [12]. Many studies have reported detection of gastric cells in blood [13], bone marrow [14], and peritoneal washing [15] of gastric cancer patients by using real-time PCR for CEA mRNA. "
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    ABSTRACT: The existence of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) in peripheral blood as an indicator of tumor recurrence has not been clearly established, particularly for gastric cancer patients. We conducted a retrospective analysis of the relationship between CTCs in peripheral blood at initial diagnosis and clinicopathologic findings in patients with gastric carcinoma. Blood samples were obtained from 123 gastric carcinoma patients at initial diagnosis. mRNA was extracted and amplified for carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) mRNA detection using real-time RT-PCR. Periodic 3-month follow-up examinations included serum CEA measurements and imaging. The minimum threshold for corrected CEA mRNA score [(CEA mRNA/GAPDH mRNA) × 106] was set at 100. Forty-five of 123 patients (36.6%) were positive for CEA mRNA expression. CEA mRNA expression significantly correlated with T stage and postoperative recurrence status (P = 0.001). Recurrent disease was found in 44 of 123 cases (35.8%), and 25 of these (56.8%) were positive for CEA mRNA. Of these patients, CEA mRNA was more sensitive than serum CEA in indicating recurrence. Three-year disease-free survival of patients positive for CEA mRNA was significantly poorer than of patients negative for CEA mRNA (P < 0.001). Only histological grade and CEA mRNA positivity were independent factors for disease-free survival using multivariate analysis. CEA mRNA copy number in peripheral blood at initial diagnosis was significantly associated with disease recurrence in gastric adenocarcinoma patients. Real-time RT-PCR detection of CEA mRNA levels at initial diagnosis appears to be a promising predictor for disease recurrence in gastric adenocarcinoma patients.
    Journal of Translational Medicine 10/2010; 8(1):107. DOI:10.1186/1479-5876-8-107 · 3.93 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Free cancer cells exfoliated from the serosal surfaces of primary cancers are considered to be responsible for peritoneal dissemination, which are both the most frequent pattern of treatment failure and the most important cause of death in gastric cancer patients. Detection of free cancer cells in the peritoneal cavity at the time of surgery, therefore, is thought to be of great value in predicting peritoneal recurrence and accordingly the prognosis of gastric cancer patients. This study was designed to determine whether free cancer cells in peritoneal lavage fluid from gastric cancer patients could be identified by a reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) method specific to carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) mRNA. Simultaneously, the results from conventional cytological examination were evaluated and the levels of CEA in peritoneal lavage were determined. Of the 40 gastric cancer patients enrolling in this investigation, 11 (27.5%) were positive for CEA mRNA in their peritoneal lavage, whereas only 6 (15%) and 8 (20%) were shown to be positive by cytological examination and peritoneal CEA (pCEA) assay, respectively. Furthermore, RT-PCR positive for CEA mRNA was correlated with the depth of tumor invasion (P<0.001), lymph node metastases (P=0.004), the TNM stage (P<0.001) and peritoneal recurrence (P<0.001). The technique of RT-PCR was more sensitive than conventional cytological examination and pCEA levels in the detection of peritoneal free cancer cells as well as in the prediction of peritoneal recurrence. In addition, CEA RT-PCR had a high concordance rate (82.5%) with the combination of cytology with pCEA levels. These observations suggest that it is feasible to identify free cancer cells in peritoneal lavage by using a CEA mRNA-specific RT-PCR method, and this assay can be a promising diagnostic modality for evaluating the risk of peritoneal dissemination in gastric cancer patients following operations.
    Cancer Letters 07/2005; 223(1):129-35. DOI:10.1016/j.canlet.2004.09.031 · 5.62 Impact Factor
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