Circulating tumor cells, disease recurrence and survival in newly diagnosed breast cancer
1 Department of Internal Medicine, Medisch Spectrum Twente, Haaksbergerstraat 55, Enschede, 7513 ER, The Netherlands
2 Department of Surgery, Medisch Spectrum Twente, Haaksbergerstraat 55, Enschede, 7513 ER, The Netherlands
3 Department of Clinical Chemistry, Medisch Spectrum Twente, Haaksbergerstraat 55, Enschede, 7513 ER, The Netherlands
4 Department of Epidemiology, Medisch Spectrum Twente, Haaksbergerstraat 55, Enschede, 7513 ER, The Netherlands
5 Department of Research Methodology, Measurement and Data Analysis, University of Twente, Drienerlolaan 5 Enschede, 7522 NB, The Netherlands
6 VyCAP, Abraham Rademakerstraat 41, Deventer, 7425 PG, The Netherlands
7 Medical Cell BioPhysics group, MIRA Institute, University of Twente, Drienerlolaan 5, Enschede, 7522 NB, The Netherlands
Breast Cancer Research 2012, 14:R133 doi:10.1186/bcr3333Published: 22 October 2012
The presence of circulating tumor cells (CTC) is an independent prognostic factor for progression-free survival and breast cancer-related death (BRD) for patients with metastatic breast cancer beginning a new line of systemic therapy. The current study was undertaken to explore whether the presence of CTC at the time of diagnosis was associated with recurrence-free survival (RFS) and BRD.
In a prospective single center study, CTC were enumerated with the CellSearch system in 30 ml of peripheral blood of 602 patients before undergoing surgery for breast cancer. There were 97 patients with a benign tumor, 101 did not meet the inclusion criteria of which there were 48 patients with DCIS, leaving 404 stage I to III patients. Patients were stratified into unfavorable (CTC ≥1) and favorable (CTC = 0) prognostic groups.
Presence of CTC in breast cancer patients before undergoing surgery with curative intent is associated with an increased risk for breast cancer-related death.