Matelda Zancan

Chinook Regional Hospital, Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada

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Publications (14)36.58 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: To further investigate the role of sex hormones in breast cancer, we assessed the relations of circulating estradiol and testosterone to tumor size and estrogen receptor (ER) status. This was a cross-sectional study including 492 postmenopausal breast cancer patients. The relation of circulating hormones to patient and tumor characteristics was assessed using the Fisher or Cuzick tests. Multivariable logistic regression was used to estimate the odds ratios (ORs) of having tumors =2 cm (vs and <2 cm) and having ER-positive tumors (vs ER-negative) with increasing quartiles of estradiol and testosterone. Mean estradiol and testosterone levels increased significantly with increasing tumor size. The ORs of tumors =2 cm increased significantly with increasing quartiles of estradiol (Ptrend and <0.001) and testosterone (Ptrend=0.005). When adjusted for estradiol, the association between testosterone and tumor size was no longer significant. Mean testosterone levels were higher in ER-positive than ER-negative patients (p and <0.001), while mean estradiol levels did not differ significantly between the two ER categories (p=0.192). The ORs of having an ER-positive tumor increased significantly with increasing quartiles of testosterone (Ptrend=0.002), whereas the increase with increasing estradiol quartiles was not significant (Ptrend=0.07). The association of both hormones with tumor size implies that both are involved in tumor growth, testosterone mainly by conversion to estradiol. The strong association of testosterone with ER contrasts with the weak association of estradiol with ER and confirms testosterone as a marker of hormone-dependent tumors. These findings suggest that testosterone evaluation might be useful to better identify patients with hormone-dependent disease.
    The International journal of biological markers 10/2011; 26(4):241-6. · 1.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Androgens are involved in the development of breast cancer, although the mechanisms remain unclear. To further investigate androgens in breast cancer, we examined the relations between serum testosterone and age, body mass index (BMI), tumor size, histologic type, grade, axillary node involvement, estrogen receptor status, progesterone receptor status, and HER2 overexpression in a cross-sectional study of 592 postmenopausal breast cancer patients. Mean testosterone differences according to categories of patient and tumor characteristics were assayed by Fisher's or Kruskall-Wallis test as appropriate; adjusted odds ratios (OR) of having a tumor characteristic by testosterone tertiles were estimated by logistic regression. Testosterone concentrations were significantly higher in women with BMI >or=30 versus BMI <25. ORs of having a tumor >or=2 cm increased significantly with increasing testosterone tertiles, and the association was stronger in women >/=65 years. The OR of having infiltrating ductal carcinoma was significantly higher in the highest compared with the lowest testosterone tertile. ORs of having estrogen receptor- and progesterone receptor-negative versus estrogen receptor- and progesterone receptor-positive tumors decreased significantly with increasing testosterone tertiles. In women >or=70 years, those with high testosterone had a significantly greater OR of HER2-negative cancer than those with low testosterone. These results support previous findings that high-circulating testosterone is a marker of hormone-dependent breast cancer. The age-related differences in the association of testosterone with other disease and patient characteristics suggest that breast cancers in older postmenopausal women differ markedly from those in younger postmenopausal women. The relationship between testosterone and HER2 status in the oldest patients merits further investigation.
    Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers &amp Prevention 11/2009; 18(11):2942-8. · 4.56 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The diagnosis and follow-up of bladder cancer are mainly based on cystoscopy, an invasive method which could be negative in case of flat malignancies such as carcinoma in situ. Other noninvasive diagnostic methods have not yet given satisfactory results. There is a need for a reliable yet noninvasive method for the detection of bladder cancer. Our aim was to investigate whether cell-free DNA quantified in urine (ucf-DNA) could be a useful marker for the diagnosis of bladder cancer. A standard urine test was performed in 150 naturally voided morning urine samples that were processed to obtain a quantitative evaluation of ucf-DNA. Leukocyturia and/or bacteriuria were found in 18 subjects, who were excluded from the study. Statistical analysis was performed on 45 bladder cancer patients and 87 healthy subjects. Ucf-DNA was extracted from urine samples by a spin column-based method and quantified using four different methods: GeneQuant Pro (Amersham Biosciences, Pittsburg, PA, USA), Quant-iT DNA high-sensitivity assay kit (Invitrogen, Carlsbad, CA, USA), Real-Time PCR (Applied Biosystems, Foster City, CA, USA), and NanoDrop 1000 (NanoDrop Technologies, Houston, TX, USA). Median free DNA quantification did not differ statistically between bladder cancer patients and healthy subjects. A receiver-operating characteristic (ROC) curve was developed to evaluate the diagnostic performance of ucf-DNA quantification for each method. The area under the ROC curve was 0.578 for GeneQuant Pro, 0.573 for the Quant-iT DNA high-sensitivity assay kit, 0.507 for Real-Time PCR, and 0.551 for NanoDrop 1000, which indicated that ucf-DNA quantification by these methods is not able to discriminate between the presence and absence of bladder cancer. No association was found between ucf-DNA quantification and tumor size or tumor focality. In conclusion, ucf-DNA isolated by a spin column-based method and quantified by GeneQuant Pro, Quant-iT DNA high-sensitivity assay kit, Real-Time PCR or NanoDrop 1000 does not seem to be a reliable marker for the diagnosis of bladder cancer.
    The International journal of biological markers 01/2009; 24(3):147-55. · 1.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cancer antigen CA125 is known as a valuable marker for the management of ovarian cancer. The analytical and clinical performance of the Access OV Monitor Immunoassay System (Beckman Coulter) was evaluated at five different European sites and compared with a reference system, defined as CA125 on the Elecsys System (Roche Diagnostics). Total imprecision (% CV) of the OV Monitor ranged between 3.1% and 8.8%, and inter-laboratory reproducibility between 4.7% and 5.0%. Linearity upon dilution showed a mean recovery of 100% (SD + 8.1%). Endogenous interferents had no influence on OV Monitor levels (mean recoveries: hemoglobin 107%, bilirubin 103%, triglycerides 103%). There was no high-dose hook effect up to 27,193 kU/L. Clinical performance investigated in sera from 1811 individuals showed a good correlation between the Access OV Monitor and Elecsys CA125 (R = 0.982, slope = 0.921, intercept = +1.951). OV Monitor serum levels were low in healthy individuals (n = 267, median = 9.7 kU/L, 95th percentile = 30.8 kU/L), higher in individuals with various benign diseases (n = 549, medians = 10.9-16.4 kU/L, 95th percentiles = 44.2-355 kU/L) and even higher in individuals suffering from various cancers (n = 995, medians = 12.4-445 kU/L; 95th percentiles = 53.4-4664 kU/L). Optimal diagnostic accuracy for cancer detection against the relevant benign control group by the OV Monitor was found for ovarian cancer [area under the curve (AUC) 0.898]. Results for the reference CA125 assay were comparable (AUC 0.899). The Access OV Monitor provides very good methodological characteristics and demonstrates an excellent analytical and clinical correlation with Elecsys CA125. The best diagnostic accuracy for the OV Monitor was found in ovarian cancer. Our results also suggest a clinical value of the OV Monitor in other cancers.
    Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine 02/2008; 46(5):588-99. · 3.01 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Gastrointestinal cancer antigen CA19-9 is known as a valuable marker for the management of patients with pancreatic cancer. The analytical and clinical performance of the Access GI Monitor assay (Beckman Coulter) was evaluated on the UniCel Dxl 800 Immunoassay System at five different European sites and compared with a reference method, defined as CA19-9 on the Elecsys System (Roche Diagnostics). Total imprecision (%CV) of the GI Monitor ranged between 3.4% and 7.7%, and inter-laboratory reproducibility between 3.6% and 4.0%. Linearity upon dilution showed a mean recovery of 97.4% (SD + 7.2%). Endogenous interferents had no influence on GI Monitor levels (mean recoveries: hemoglobin 103%, bilirubin 106%, triglycerides 106%). There was no high-dose hook effect up to 115,000 kU/L. Clinical performance investigated in sera from 1811 individuals showed a good correlation between the Access GI Monitor and Elecsys CA19-9 (R = 0.959, slope = 1.004, intercept = +0.17). GI Monitor serum levels were low in healthy individuals (n = 267, median = 6.0 kU/L, 95th percentile=23.1 kU/L), higher in individuals with various benign diseases (n = 550, medians = 5.8-13.4 kU/L, 95th percentiles = 30.1-195.5 kU/L) and even higher in individuals suffering from various cancers (n = 995, medians = 8.4-233.8 kU/L, 95th percentiles = 53.7-13,902 kU/L). Optimal diagnostic accuracy for cancer detection against the relevant benign control group by the GI Monitor was found for pancreatic cancer [area under the curve (AUC) 0.83]. Results for the reference CA19-9 assay were comparable (AUC 0.85). The Access GI Monitor provides very good methodological characteristics and demonstrates an excellent analytical and clinical correlation with the Elecsys CA19-9. The GI Monitor shows the best diagnostic accuracy in pancreatic cancer. Our results also suggest a clinical value of the GI Monitor in other cancers.
    Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine 02/2008; 46(5):600-11. · 3.01 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cancer antigen CA15-3 antigen is known as a valuable marker for the management of breast cancer. The analytical and clinical performance of the Access BR Monitor Immunoassay System (Beckman Coulter) was evaluated at five different European sites and compared with a reference system, defined as CA15-3 on the Elecsys System (Roche Diagnostics). Total imprecision (% CV) of the BR Monitor ranged between 5.5% and 11.7%, and inter-laboratory reproducibility between 3.4% and 5.1%. Linearity upon dilution showed a mean recovery of 98.5% (SD + 9.1%). Endogenous interferents had no influence on BR Monitor levels (mean recoveries: hemoglobin 112%, bilirubin 111%, triglycerides 108%). There was no high-dose hook effect up to 13,540 kU/L. Clinical performance investigated in sera from individuals showed a general correlation between the Access BR Monitor and Elecsys CA15-3 (R = 0.797), with a slope of 1.383. CA15-3 serum levels, as measured by the BR Monitor, were low in healthy individuals (n = 267, median = 11.9 kU/L, 95th percentile = 23.5 kU/L), higher in individuals with various benign diseases (n = 549, medians = 11.3-15.6 kU/L, 95th percentiles = 21.6-54.6 kU/L) and even higher in individuals suffering from various cancers (n = 995, medians = 11.2-22.8 kU/L, 95th percentiles = 30.0-429.7 kU/L). Best diagnostic accuracy for cancer detection against the relevant benign control group by the BR Monitor was found for locoregional and metastatic breast cancer, as well as for ovarian cancer [area under the curve (AUC) 0.619, 0.897 and 0.774]. Results for the reference CA15-3 assay were comparable (AUC 0.611, 0.887 and 0.818). The Access BR Monitor provides accurate methodological characteristics and demonstrates an analytical and clinical correlation with Elecsys CA15-3. Best diagnostic accuracy for the BR Monitor was found in breast and ovarian cancer. Our results also suggest a clinical value of the BR Monitor in other cancers.
    Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine 02/2008; 46(5):612-22. · 3.01 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A randomized Phase II study evaluated the activity of weekly paclitaxel versus its combination with trastuzumab for treatment of patients with advanced breast cancer overexpressing HER-2. Among 124 patients randomized, 123 are assessable for toxicity and 118 for response. Patients received weekly paclitaxel single agent (80 mg/m2) or combined with trastuzumab (4 mg/kg loading dose, then weekly 2 mg/kg). HER-2 overexpression was determined by immunohistochemistry (IHC). Patients with 2+/3+ IHC scores were eligible. IHC was compared with HER-2 serum extracellular domain (ECD). Patient characteristics were similar in the two arms. Both treatments were feasible and well tolerated with no grade 4 hematologic toxicity. No patient developed cardiac toxicity. The combined treatment was statistically significant superior for overall response rate (ORR) (75% vs. 56.9%; P = 0.037), particularly in the subset of IHC 3+ patients (84.5% vs. 47.5%; P = 0.00050). A statistically significant better median time to progression was seen in the subgroup with IHC 3+ (369 vs. 272 days; P = 0.030) and visceral disease (301 vs. 183 days; P = 0.0080) treated with combination. Multivariable analysis of predictive factors showed that only IHC score retained statistically significant value for ORR (P = 0.0035). Weekly paclitaxel plus trastuzumab is highly active and safe and it is superior to paclitaxel alone in patients with IHC score of 3+.
    Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 04/2007; 101(3):355-65. · 4.47 Impact Factor
  • Ejc Supplements - EJC SUPPL. 01/2007; 5(8):36-36.
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    ABSTRACT: The variation between different PSA assays seems to influence the interpretation of individual PSA values and the clinical decisions about prostate cancer. One reason for this variability could be the different reactivity of antibodies for the various molecular forms of serum PSA; as a result, samples containing the same amount of tPSA but different proportions of fPSA can produce very different values. In this study, serum samples were collected prospectively from 152 consecutive patients referred to 2 institutions (Regional Hospital, Venice, 90 subjects; San Bortolo Hospital, Vicenza, 62 subjects) for PSA elevation and/or symptoms. Serum samples were assessed according to the manufacturers' instructions on the following 2 analyzers: the Immulite 2000 assay (Diagnostic Products Corporation, Los Angeles, USA), which measures tPSA and fPSA, and the ADVIA Centaur (Bayer Diagnostics, Tarrytown, USA), which assays tPSA and cPSA. cPSA values were transformed into fPSA by the equation fPSA=tPSA-cPSA. When taking Immulite tPSA and f/tPSA values as 100%, ADVIA Centaur values were 92.6% and 122%, respectively, which means that 20% of patients would be classified differently according to the traditional biopsy cutoff. In conclusion, there are considerable differences between the 2 methods, which could affect clinical decisions.
    The International journal of biological markers 01/2007; 22(2):154-8. · 1.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) is overexpressed in approximately 50% of invasive breast carcinomas and it is correlated with hormone resistance and poor prognosis. EGFR suppression by gefitinib, a quinazoline derivative that inhibits phosphorylation of the specific receptor, represents a novel therapeutic strategy. A dose-finding study was performed to evaluate the combination of gefitinib with weekly epirubicin in patients with pretreated metastatic breast cancer. Fifteen patients were enrolled at four sequential dose levels. Gefitinib was administered orally, at the fixed daily dose of 250 mg. The starting dose of epirubicin was 20 mg/m2. Escalating dose levels of epirubicin were planned by increments of 5 mg/m2 per level, up to the maximum tolerated dose (MTD). Pharmacodynamic studies were performed by determining serum and tissue ERBB2 and EGFR. At the first three dose levels tested no patient experienced a dose-limiting toxicity (DLT). In cohort 4, two patients experienced DLTs (grade 4 dyspnea and asthenia, grade 3 diarrhea and thrombocytopenia) identifying the MTD of epirubicin as 35 mg/m2. Of the 14 cases assessable for response, partial response was documented in two patients, and stable disease in seven, giving an overall disease control rate of 64.2%. The comparison of pre- and post-therapy ERBB2 and EGFR values was not statistically significant between the subgroups of patients regarding responsiveness to treatment. The recommended dose of epirubicin for phase II studies is 30 mg/m2 in combination with gefitinib at the daily dose of 250 mg. Pharmacodynamic studies did not identify any biomarker predictive of response.
    Annals of Oncology 01/2006; 16(12):1867-73. · 7.38 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of the present preliminary study was to investigate the presence of free DNA (FDNA) in urine as a possible marker for the diagnosis of bladder cancer. Naturally voided morning urine specimens were collected from 57 patients with suspected bladder cancer before cystoscopy. A standard urine test was performed; the specimens were then processed in order to obtain a quantitative evaluation of the presence of free DNA in the urine. Twenty-two patients were excluded from the study because they had leukocyturia and/or bacteriuria. Free DNA concentrations higher than 250 ng/mL were found in all 16 patients showing bladder cancer at cystoscopy and in seven (36.8%) of the 19 patients with negative cystoscopy. Urinary FDNA seems to have an excellent sensitivity: we observed no false negative cases and 36.8% false positive cases. By contrast, only 6.25% of the bladder cancer patients had positive urine cytology. Our results seem promising, although further studies and larger numbers are needed to define urinary free DNA as a reliable marker of bladder cancer.
    The International journal of biological markers 01/2006; 20(2):134-6. · 1.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Serum HER-2/neu concentrations were evaluated in 172 healthy subjects, 176 primary and 55 metastatic breast cancer patients, employing a new automated assay (Bayer Immuno 1 serum HER-2/neu). Using 13 ng/mL as the cutoff, abnormal HER-2/neu serum levels were found in 8% (14/176) of primary and 50.9% (28/55) of metastatic breast cancer patients. Both in primary and metastatic breast cancer a significant relationship was found with the stage of the disease when serum HER-2/neu was considered as a categorized variable (p=0.0003 and p=0.02, respectively), but not when it was taken as a continuous variable (p=0.247 and p=0.146, respectively). Moreover, we evaluated the correlation between Immuno 1 HER-2/neu and Oncogene Research Products ELISA assay in 53 normal subjects, 46 primary and 34 metastatic breast cancer patients. The correlation was relatively good (p<0.0001), although substantial differences could be found in single cases. The Immuno 1 assay was also evaluated for the first time in breast cancer tissue. The method, which showed good performance both in terms of imprecision and linearity, was used to measure HER-2/neu protein in 140 cytosol samples from primary breast cancer tissue and in homogenates from 40 matched cases. The correlation between the two matrixes was very close (p<0.0001). By contrast, no correlation was found between serum and matched cytosol (p=0.101) or homogenate samples (p=0.511).
    The International journal of biological markers 01/2001; 16(4):255-61. · 1.59 Impact Factor
  • The International journal of biological markers 16(1):69-70. · 1.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In 2007, an Italian cancer research group proposed a specific concerted action aimed at the "analytical and clinica validation of new biomarkers for early diagnosis: Network, resources, methodology, quality control, and data analysis." The proposal united 37 national operative units involved in different biomarker studies and it created a strong coordinative body with the necessary expertise in methodologies, statistical analysis, quality control, and biological resources to perform ad hoc validation studies for new biomarkers of early cancer diagnosis. The action, financed by the Italian Ministry of Health within the Integrated Oncology Program (PIO) coordinated by NCI-Istituto Tumori Bari, started in 2007 and activated 7 projects, each of which focused on disease-specific biomarker studies. Overall, the 37 participating units proposed studies on 50 biomarkers, including analytical and clinical validation procedures. Clusters of units were specifically involved in research of early-detection biomarkers for cancers of the lung, digestive tract, prostate/bladder, and nervous system, as well as female cancers. Furthermore, a cluster involved in biomarkers for bioimaging and infection-related cancers was created. The first investigators' meeting, "Analytical and clinical validation of new biomarkers for early diagnosis," was held on 9 September 2008 in Bari. During this meeting, methodological aspects, scientific programs and preliminary results were presented and discussed.
    The International journal of biological markers 24(3):119-29. · 1.59 Impact Factor