Research Papers:

Cell-free DNA in newly diagnosed patients with glioblastoma – a clinical prospective feasibility study

Dorte Schou Nørøxe _, Olga Østrup, Christina Westmose Yde, Lise Barlebo Ahlborn, Finn Cilius Nielsen, Signe Regner Michaelsen, Vibeke Andrée Larsen, Jane Skjøth-Rasmussen, Jannick Brennum, Petra Hamerlik, Hans Skovgaard Poulsen and Ulrik Lassen

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Oncotarget. 2019; 10:4397-4406. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.27030

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Dorte Schou Nørøxe1,2, Olga Østrup3, Christina Westmose Yde3, Lise Barlebo Ahlborn3, Finn Cilius Nielsen3, Signe Regner Michaelsen1, Vibeke Andrée Larsen4, Jane Skjøth-Rasmussen5, Jannick Brennum5, Petra Hamerlik6, Hans Skovgaard Poulsen1,2 and Ulrik Lassen2

1 Department of Radiation Biology, Rigshospitalet, 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark

2 Department of Oncology, Rigshospitalet, 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark

3 Center for Genomic Medicine, Rigshospitalet, 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark

4 Department of Neuroradiology, Rigshospitalet, 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark

5 Department of Neurosurgery, Rigshospitalet, 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark

6 Danish Cancer Society, 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark

Correspondence to:

Dorte Schou Nørøxe,email: [email protected]

Keywords: glioblastoma; liquid biopsy; cell-free DNA; fragment length; base-pair

Received: March 10, 2019     Accepted: May 29, 2019     Published: July 09, 2019


Background: Glioblastoma (GB) is an incurable brain cancer with limited treatment options. The aim was to test the feasibility of using cell-free DNA (cfDNA) to support evaluation of treatment response, pseudo-progression and whether progression could be found before clinical and/or radiologic progression.

Results: CfDNA fluctuated during treatment with the highest levels before diagnostic surgery and at progression. An increase was seen in 3 out of 4 patients at the time of progression while no increase was seen in 3 out of 4 patients without progression. CfDNA levels could aid in 3 out of 3 questionable cases of pseudo-progression.

Methods: Eight newly diagnosed GB patients were included. Blood samples were collected prior to diagnosis, before start and during oncologic treatment until progression. Seven patients received concurrent radiotherapy/Temozolomide with adjuvant Temozolomide with one of the patients included in a clinical trial with either immunotherapy or placebo as add-on. One patient received radiation alone. CfDNA concentration was determined for each blood sample.

Conclusions: It was feasible to measure cfDNA concentration. Despite the limited cohort size, there was a good tendency between cfDNA and treatment course and -response, respectively with the highest levels at progression.

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