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BACKGROUND Cytokeratins are specific markers of epithelial cancer cells in bone marrow. We assessed the influence of cytokeratin-positive micrometastases in the bone marrow on the prognosis of women with breast cancer. METHODS We obtained bone marrow aspirates from both upper iliac crests of 552 patients with stage I, II, or III breast cancer who(More)
Despite current advances in antibody-based immunotherapy of breast and colorectal cancer, we have recently shown that the actual target cells (e.g., tumor cells disseminated to bone marrow) may express a heterogeneous pattern of the potential target antigens. Tumor antigen heterogeneity may therefore represent an important limitation of the efficacy of(More)
PURPOSE There is an urgent need for markers that can predict the efficacy of adjuvant chemotherapy in patients with solid tumors. This study was designed to evaluate whether monitoring of micrometastases in bone marrow can predict the response to systemic chemotherapy in breast cancer. PATIENTS AND METHODS Bone marrow aspirates of 59 newly diagnosed(More)
PURPOSE In node-negative patients, of whom up to 30% will recur within 5 years after diagnosis, markers are still needed that identify patients at high enough risk to warrant further adjuvant treatment. In the present study we analyzed whether a correlation exists between microscopic tumor cell spread to bone marrow and to lymph nodes and attempted to(More)
Single micrometastatic tumor cells encased in mesenchymal tissues, such as bone marrow (BM), are regarded as suitable targets for adjuvant immunotherapy since they are easily accessible for both immunoglobulins and immune effector cells. However, the antigen profile of such cells, to which antibody therapy might be targeted, cannot be deduced from the(More)
BACKGROUND The current study examines the fate of occult metastatic cells detected in bone marrow (BM) at primary diagnosis and evaluates whether persistently positive findings support the prognostic influence of these cells in patients with Stage I--III (International Union Against Cancer) breast carcinoma. METHODS The authors analyzed BM aspirates, at(More)
BACKGROUND Using cytokeratin (CK) as a histogenetic marker of epithelial tumor cells in the bone marrow of patients with primary breast carcinoma, a subgroup of patients with decreased survival can be identified. This study was designed to evaluate the frequency and prognostic relevance of such cells in patients with recurrent breast carcinoma. METHODS(More)
BACKGROUND Approximately 30% of the patients with primary breast cancer who have no axillary lymph node involvement (i.e., lymph node negative) at the time of surgery will relapse within 10 years; 10%-20% of the patients with distant metastases will be lymph node negative at surgery. Axillary lymph node dissection, as a surgical procedure, is associated(More)
PURPOSE Based on conventional tumor staging, primary ovarian cancer is viewed as an intraperitoneal disease that rarely spreads to extraperitoneal organs. However, autopsy studies reveal a much higher rate of occult metastasis, indicating that extraperitoneal spread occurs with much greater frequency than previously appreciated. Consequently, we(More)
BACKGROUND Breast-conserving therapy has been demonstrated to be just as safe and a less disruptive experience compared with mastectomy for surgically manageable breast cancer. There is, however, no agreement in the literature about the impact of these procedures on several important aspects of quality of life (QOL). The purpose of the present study is to(More)