Research Papers:

Combining plasma Epstein-Barr virus DNA and nodal maximal standard uptake values of 18F-fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose positron emission tomography improved prognostic stratification to predict distant metastasis for locoregionally advanced nasopharyngeal carcinoma

Wen-Hui Chen _, Lin-Quan Tang, Lu Zhang, Qiu-Yan Chen, Shan-Shan Guo, Li-Ting Liu, Wei Fan, Xu Zhang, Ling Guo, Chong Zhao, Ka-Jia Cao, Chao-Nan Qian, Xiang Guo, Dan Xie, Mu-Sheng Zeng and Hai-Qiang Mai

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Oncotarget. 2015; 6:38296-38307. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.5699

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Wen-Hui Chen1,*, Lin-Quan Tang1,2,*, Lu Zhang1,2,*, Qiu-Yan Chen1,2, Shan-Shan Guo1,2, Li-Ting Liu1,2, Wei Fan1,3, Xu Zhang1,3, Ling Guo1,2, Chong Zhao1,2, Ka-Jia Cao1,2, Chao-Nan Qian1,2, Xiang Guo1,2, Dan Xie1, Mu-Sheng Zeng1, Hai-Qiang Mai1,2

1Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center; State Key Laboratory of Oncology in South China; Collaborative Innovation Center for Cancer Medicine, Guangzhou 510060, China

2Department of Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma, Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou 510060, China

3Department of Nuclear Medicine, Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou 510060, China

*These authors have contributed equally to this work.

Correspondence to:

Hai-Qiang Mai, e-mail: [email protected]

Keywords: nasopharyngeal carcinoma, EBV DNA, SUVmax, survival

Received: June 25, 2015     Accepted: September 30, 2015     Published: October 13, 2015


Background: This study aimed to evaluate the value of combining the nodal maximal standard uptake values (SUVmax) of 18 F-fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose positron emission tomography with Epstein-Barr virus DNA(EBV DNA) levels to predict distant metastasis for nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) patients

Patients and Methods: Eight hundred seventy-four patients with stage III-IVa-b NPC were evaluated for the effects of combining SUVmax and EBV DNA levels on distant metastasis-free survival (DMFS), disease-free survival (DFS) and overall survival (OS).

Results: The optimal cutoff value was 6,220 copies/mL for EBV DNA and 7.5 for SUVmax-N. Patients with lower EBV DNA levels or SUVmax-N had a significantly better 3-year DMFS, DFS, and OS. Patients were divided into four groups based on EBV DNA and SUVmax-N, as follows: low EBV DNA and low SUVmax-N (LL), low EBV DNA and high SUVmax-N (LH), high EBV DNA and low SUVmax-N (HL), and high EBV DNA and high SUVmax-N (HH). There were significant differences between the four mentioned groups in 3-year DMFS: 95.7%, 92.2%, 92.3%, and 80.1%, respectively (Ptrend < 0.001). When looking at the disease stage, the 3-year DMFS in group LL, LH, HL, HH were 94.2%, 92.9%, 95.0%, and 81.1%, respectively, in stage III patients (Ptrend < 0.001) and 92.7%, 87.2%, 86.3%, and 77.0% in stage IVa–b patients (Ptrend = 0.026).

Conclusion: Pretreatment EBV DNA and SUVmax of neck lymph nodes were independent prognostic factors for distant metastasis in NPC patients. Combining EBV DNA and SUVmax-N led to an improved risk stratification for distant metastasis in advanced-stage disease.

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