- Journal Details
- First Published
- 30 Apr 2007
- Publication timeframe
- 4 times per year
- Open Access
18F-fluorodeoxyglucose and 18F-flumazenil positron emission tomography in patients with refractory epilepsy
Page range: 247 - 253
Epilepsy is a neurological disorder characterized by epileptic seizures as a result of excessive neuronal activity in the brain. Approximately 65 million people worldwide suffer from epilepsy; 20–40% of them are refractory to medication therapy. Early detection of disease is crucial in the management of patients with epilepsy. Correct localization of the ictal onset zone is associated with a better surgical outcome. The modern non-invasive techniques used for structural-functional localization of the seizure focus includes electroencephalography (EEG) monitoring, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), single photon emission tomography/computed tomography (SPECT/CT) and positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT). PET/CT can predict surgical outcome in patients with refractory epilepsy. The aim of the article is to review the current role of routinely used tracer 2-deoxy-2-[18F]fluoro-D-glucose (18F-FDG) as well as non routinely used 18F-Flumazenil (18F-FMZ) tracers PET/CT in patients with refractory epilepsy.
Functional information delivered by PET and the morphologic information delivered by CT or MRI are essential in presurgical evaluation of epilepsy. Nowadays 18F-FDG PET/CT is a routinely performed imaging modality in localization of the ictal onset zone in patients with refractory epilepsy who are unresponsive to medication therapy. Unfortunately, 18F-FDG is not an ideal PET tracer regarding the management of patients with epilepsy: areas of glucose hypometabolism do not correlate precisely with the proven degree of change within hippocampal sclerosis, as observed by histopathology or MRI. Benzodiazepine-receptor imaging is a promising alternative in nuclear medicine imaging of epileptogenic focus. The use of 11C-FMZ in clinical practice has been limited by its short half-life and necessitating an on-site cyclotron for production. Therefore, 18F-FMZ might be established as one of the tracers of choice for patients with refractory epilepsy because of better sensitivity and anatomical resolution.
- nuclear medicine
- Open Access
The role of neoadjuvant chemotherapy in patients with advanced (stage IIIC) epithelial ovarian cancer
Page range: 341 - 346
Primary treatment of patients with advanced epithelial ovarian cancer consists of chemotherapy either before (neoadjuvant chemotherapy, NACT) or after primary surgery (adjuvant chemotherapy). The goal of primary treatment is no residual disease after surgery (R0 resection) what is associated with an improvement in survival of patients. There is, however, no evidence of survival benefits in patients with R0 resections after prior NACT.
We retrospectively reviewed the records of patients who were treated with diagnosis of epithelial ovarian cancer at Institute of Oncology Ljubljana in the years 2005–2007. The differences in the rates of R0 resections, progression free survival (PFS), overall survival (OS) and in five-year and eight-year survival rates between patients treated with NACT and patients who had primary surgery were compared.
Overall 160 patients had stage IIIC epithelial ovarian cancer. Eighty patients had NACT and eighty patients had primary surgery. Patients in NACT group had higher rates of R0 resection (42%
Despite higher rates of R0 resections achieved by NACT, survival of patients treated with NACT was inferior to survival of patients who underwent primary surgery. NACT should only be offered to patients with advanced epithelial cancer who are not candidates for primary surgery.
- advanced ovarian cancer
- neoadjuvant chemotherapy
- primary surgery
- Open Access
Page range: 337 - 340
Uncertainty exists whether patients with spinal cord compression (SCC) from a highly radiosensitive tumor require decompressive spinal surgery in addition to radiotherapy (RT). This study addressed the question by evaluating patients receiving RT alone for SCC from myeloma.
Data of 238 patients were retrospectively analyzed for response to RT and local control of SCC. In addition, the effect of RT on motor function (improvement, no further progression, deterioration) was evaluated. Overall response was defined as improvement or no further progression of motor dysfunction. Prior to RT, patients were presented to a neurosurgeon for evaluation whether upfront decompressive surgery was indicated (
In the entire cohort, the overall response rate was 97% (53% improvement plus 44% no further progression). Following RT, 88% of the patients were able to walk. Of the 69 non-ambulatory patients 44 patients (64%) regained the ability to walk. Local control rates at 1, 2 and 3 years were 93%, 82% and 82%, respectively. A trend towards better local control was observed for patients who were ambulatory before starting RT (p = 0.08) and those with a more favorable performance status (p = 0.07).
RT alone provided excellent response rates, functional outcomes and local control in patients with SCC from myeloma. These results should be confirmed in a prospective randomized trial.
- spinal cord compression
- radiotherapy alone
- overall response
- local control
- Open Access
Interdisciplinary consensus statement on indication and application of a hydrogel spacer for prostate radiotherapy based on experience in more than 250 patients
Page range: 329 - 336
The aim of the study was to reach a consensus on indication and application of a hydrogel spacer based on multicentre experience and give new users important information to shorten the learning curve for this innovative technique.
The interdisciplinary meeting was attended by radiation oncologists and urologists, each with experience of 23 – 138 hydrogel injections (SpaceOAR®) in prostate cancer patients before dose-escalated radiotherapy. User experience was discussed and questions were defined to comprise practical information relevant for successful hydrogel injection and treatment. Answers to the defined key questions were generated. Hydrogel-associated side effects were collected to estimate the percentage, treatment and prognosis of potential risks.
The main indication for hydrogel application was dose-escalated radiotherapy for histologically confirmed low or intermediate risk prostate cancer. It was not recommended in locally advanced prostate cancer. The injection or implantation was performed under transrectal ultrasound guidance
A consensus was reached on the application of a hydrogel spacer. Current experience demonstrated feasibility, which could promote initiation of this method in more centres to reduce radiation-related gastrointestinal toxicity of dose-escalated IGRT. However, a very low rate of a potential serious adverse event could not be excluded. Therefore, the application should carefully be discussed with the patient and be balanced against potential benefits.
- prostate cancer
- hydrogel spacer
- dose-escalated radiotherapy
- Open Access
Page range: 321 - 328
Recent reports have shown that patients with vascular tumour invasion who undergo concurrent vascular resection can achieve long-term survival rates equivalent to those without vascular involvement requiring pancreaticoduodenectomy alone. There is no consensus about which patients benefit from the portal-superior mesenteric vein resection and there is no consensus about the best surgical technique of vessel reconstruction (resection with or without graft reconstruction). As published series are small the aim of this study was to evaluate our experience in pancreatectomies with en bloc vascular resection and reconstruction of vessels.
Review of database at University Clinical Centre Maribor identified 133 patients (average age 65.4 ± 8.6 years, 69 female patients) who underwent pancreatoduodenectomy between January 2006 and August 2014. Clinical data, operative results, pathological findings and postoperative outcomes were collected prospectively and analyzed. Current literature and our experience in pancreatectomies with en bloc vascular resection and reconstruction of portal vein are reviewed.
Twenty-two patients out of 133 (16.5%) had portal vein-superior mesenteric vein resection and portal vein reconstruction (PVR) during pancreaticoduodenectomy. In fourteen patients portal vein was reconstructed without the use of synthetic vascular graft. In these series two types of venous reconstruction were performed. When tumour involvement was limited to the superior mesenteric vein (SPV) or portal vein (PV) such that the splenic vein could be preserved, and vessels could be approximated without tension a primary end-to-end anastomosis was performed. When tumour involved the SMV-splenic vein confluence, splenic vein ligation was necessary. In the remaining eight procedures interposition graft was needed. Dacron grafts with 10 mm diameter were used. There was no infection after dacron grafting. One patient had portal vein thrombosis after surgery: it was thrombosis after primary reconstruction. There were no thromboses in patients with synthetic graft interposition. There were no significant differences in postoperative morbidity, mortality or grades of complication between groups of patients with or without a PVR. Median survival time in months was in a group with vein resection 16.13 months and in a group without vein resection 15.17 months. Five year survival in the group without vein resection was 19.5%. Comparison of survival curves showed equal hazard rates with log-rank p = 0.090.
Survival of patients with pancreatic cancer who undergo an R0 resection with reconstruction was comparable to those who have a standard pancreaticoduodenectomy with no added mortality or morbidity. Synthetic graft appeared to be an effective and safe option as an interposition graft for portomesenteric venous reconstruction after pancreaticoduodenectomy.
- pancreatic cancer
- vein resection
- Open Access
The proliferation marker Ki67, but not neuroendocrine expression, is an independent factor in the prediction of prognosis of primary prostate cancer patients
Page range: 313 - 320
Neuroendocrine markers, which could indicate for aggressive variants of prostate cancer and Ki67 (a well-known marker in oncology for defining tumor proliferation), have already been associated with clinical outcome in prostate cancer. The aim of this study was to investigate the prognostic value of those markers in primary prostate cancer patients.
NSE (neuron specific enolase), ChrA (chromogranin A), Syp (Synaptophysin) and Ki67 staining were performed by immunohistochemistry. Then, the prognostic impact of their expression on overall survival was investigated in 166 primary prostate cancer patients by univariate and multivariate analyses.
NSE, ChrA, Syp and Ki67 were positive in 50, 45, 54 and 146 out of 166 patients, respectively. In Kaplan-Meier analysis only diffuse NSE staining (negative vs diffuse, p = 0.004) and Ki67 (≤ 10% vs > 10%, p < 0.0001) were significantly associated with overall survival. Ki67 expression, but not NSE, resulted as an independent prognostic factor for overall survival in multivariate analysis.
A prognostic model incorporating Ki67 expression with clinical-pathological covariates could provide additional prognostic information. Ki67 may thus improve prediction of prostate cancer outcome based on standard clinical-pathological parameters improving prognosis and management of prostate cancer patients.
- primary prostate cancer
- Open Access
Metastatic sebaceous cell carcinoma, review of the literature and use of electrochemotherapy as possible new treatment modality
Page range: 308 - 312
Metastatic extraorbital sebaceous carcinoma is a rare event that could involve the head and neck. The treatment of choice for the initial stage of the disease is surgery and/or radiotherapy. The treatment of recurrent or advanced disease is still controversial.
Extensive literature search was done, and the treatment options are discussed.
Results. The literature search found several treatment modalities in use for the treatment of metastatic extraorbital sebaceous carcinoma. Electrochemotherapy was not included in the reported treatments. We used this technique for a man of 85 years old with a recurrent and locally metastatic extraorbital sebaceous carcinoma of the scalp. During the period of 8 months, two sessions of electrochemotherapy were employed, which resulted in an objective response of the tumour and good quality of life.
Electrochemotherapy has shown to be a interesting tools for treatment of metastatic extraorbital sebaceous carcinoma when other radical options are not available or convenient.
- head and neck tumour
- extraorbital tumour
- sebaceous carcinoma
- Open Access
Page range: 297 - 307
Malignant transformation of normal gastric cells is a complex and multistep process, resulting in development of heterogeneous tumours. Susceptible genetic background, accumulation of genetic changes, and environmental factors play an important role in gastric carcinogenesis. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in mitotic segregation genes could be responsible for inducing the slow process of accumulation of genetic changes, leading to genome instability.
We performed a case-control study of polymorphisms in mitotic kinases
C/G genotype of rs151658 was more frequent in patients with diffuse type of gastric cancer and G/G genotype was more common in intestinal types of gastric cancers (p = 0.049). Polymorphic genotype A/A of rs1801376 was associated with higher risk for developing diffuse type of gastric cancer in female population (p = 0.007), whereas A/A frequencies were increased in male patients with subserosa tumour cell infiltration (p = 0.009). T/T genotype of rs1031963 was associated with well differentiated tumours (p = 0.035). TT+CT genotypes of rs1031963 and GG+AG genotypes of rs1801376 were significantly associated with gastric cancer risk (dominant model; OR = 2,929, 95% CI: 1.281-6.700; p = 0.017 and dominant model; OR = 0,364, 95% CI: 0.192-0.691; p = 0.003 respectively).
Our results suggest that polymorphisms in mitotic kinases
- cancer susceptibility
- chromosomal instability
- chromosome segregation
- mitotic checkpoint
- serine/threonine kinase
- genetic association
- Open Access
Functional polymorphisms in antioxidant genes in Hurthle cell thyroid neoplasm - an association of
GPX1 polymorphism and recurrent Hurthle cell thyroid carcinoma
Page range: 289 - 296
Hurthle cells of the thyroid gland are very rich in mitochondria and oxidative enzymes. As a high level oxidative metabolism may lead to higher level of oxidative stress and can be associated with an increased risk for cancer, we investigated whether common functional polymorphisms in antioxidant genes
A retrospective study was performed in 139 patients treated by thyroid surgery for a Hurthle cell neoplasm. HCTC, Hurthle cell thyroid adenoma (HCTA) or Hurthle cell thyroid nodule (HCTN) were diagnosed by pathomorphology. DNA was extracted from cores of histologically confirmed normal tissue obtained from formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded specimens and genotyped for investigated polymorphisms. Logistic regression was used to compare genotype distributions between patient groups.
HCTC, HCTA and HCTN were diagnosed in 53, 47 and 21 patients, respectively. Metastatic disease and recurrence of HCTC were diagnosed in 20 and 16 HCTC patients, respectively. Genotypes and allele frequencies of investigated polymorphisms did not deviate from Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium in patients with HCTC, HCTA and HCTN. Under the dominant genetic model we observed no differences in the genotype frequency distribution of the investigated polymorphisms when the HCTA and HCTN group was compared to the HCTC group for diagnosis of HCTC or for the presence of metastatic disease. However,
- Hurthle cell thyroid carcinoma
- Hurthle cell neoplasm
- oxidative stress
- antioxidant genes
- Open Access
Page range: 280 - 288
In order to increase the effectiveness of cancer treatment, new compounds with potential anticancer activities are synthesized and screened. Here we present the screening of a new class of compounds, 1-(2-picolyl)-, 4-(2-picolyl)-, 1-(2-pyridyl)-, and 4-(2-pyridyl)-3-methyl-1,2,3-triazolium salts and ‘parent’ 1,2,3-triazole precursors.
Cytotoxic activity of new compounds was determined by spectrophotometric MTT assay on several tumour and one normal cell line. Effect of the selected compound to bind double stranded DNA (ds DNA) was examined by testing its influence on thermal stability of calf thymus DNA while its influence on cell cycle was determined by flow cytometric analysis. Generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) was determined by addition of specific substrate 5-(and-6)-chloromethyl-2’,7’-dichlorodihydrofluorescein diacetate, acetyl ester (CM-H2DCFDA).
Parent triazoles were largely inactive, while some of the triazolium salts were highly cytotoxic for HeLa cells. Triazolium salts exhibited high cell-type dependent cytotoxicity against different tumour cells. Selected compound (4-(4-methoxyphenyl)-3-methyl-1-(2-picolyl)-1
Our results suggest that the ‘click’ triazolium salts are worthy of further investigation as anti-cancer agents.
- triazolium salts
- anticancer activity
- cell cycle
- Open Access
Electrochemotherapy with bleomycin is effective in BRAF mutated melanoma cells and interacts with BRAF inhibitors
Page range: 274 - 279
The aim of the study was to explore the effectiveness of electrochemotherapy (ECT) during the treatment of melanoma patients with BRAF inhibitors. Its effectiveness was tested on BRAF mutated and non-mutated melanoma cells
ECT with bleomycin was performed on two human melanoma cell lines, with (SK-MEL-28) or without (CHL-1) BRAF V600E mutation. Cell survival was determined using clonogenic assay to determine the effectiveness of ECT in melanoma cells of different mutation status. Furthermore, the effectiveness of ECT in concomitant treatment with BRAF inhibitor vemurafenib was also determined in BRAF mutated cells SK-MEL-28 with clonogenic assay.
The survival of BRAF V600E mutated melanoma cells was even lower than non-mutated cells, indicating that ECT is effective regardless of the mutational status of melanoma cells. Furthermore, the synergistic interaction between vemurafenib and ECT with bleomycin was demonstrated in the BRAF V600E mutated melanoma cells.
The effectiveness of ECT in BRAF mutated melanoma cells as well as potentiation of its effectiveness during the treatment with vemurafenib
- BRAF inhibitors
- Open Access
Page range: 269 - 273
Preoperative ultrasound (US) evaluation of central and lateral neck compartments is recommended for all patients undergoing a thyroidectomy for malignant or suspicious for malignancy cytologic or molecular findings. Our aim was to find out how frequent was recurrence in regional lymph nodes in patients with follicular or Hürthle cell neoplasm and usefulness of preoperative neck US investigation in patients with neoplasm.
Altogether 737 patients were surgically treated because of follicular or Hürthle cell neoplasms from 1995 to 2014 at our cancer comprehensive center, among them 207 patients (163 females, 44 males; mean age 52 years) had thyroid carcinoma.
Carcinoma was diagnosed in follicular and Hürthle cell neoplasm in 143/428 and 64/309 of cases, respectively. A recurrence in regional lymph nodes occurred in 12/207 patients (6%) during a median follow-up of 55 months. Among patients with carcinoma a recurrence in regional lymph nodes was diagnosed in follicular and Hürthle cell neoplasms in 2% and 14%, respectively (p = 0.002). Recurrence in regional lymph nodes was diagnosed in 3/428 of all patients with follicular neoplasm and 9/309 of all patients with Hürthle cell neoplasm.
Recurrence in lymph nodes was diagnosed in 0.7% of patients with a preoperative diagnosis of follicular neoplasm and 3% of patients with a Hürthle cell neoplasm. A recurrence in regional lymph nodes is rare in patients with carcinoma and preoperative diagnosis of follicular neoplasm. Preoperative neck ultrasound examination in patients with a follicular neoplasm is probably not useful, but in patients with Hurtle cell neoplasm it may be useful.
- thyroid neoplasms
- Open Access
Page range: 263 - 268
The aim of the study was to investigate the sensitivity and specificity of non-contrast computed tomography (NCCT) in the diagnosis of cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST).
Methods. Screening our neurological department database, we identified 53 patients who were admitted to neurological emergency department with clinical signs of CVST. Two independent observers assessed the NCCT scans for the presence of CVST. CT venography and/or MR venography were used as a reference standard. Interobserver agreement between the two readers was assessed using Kappa statistic. Attenuation inside the cerebral venous sinuses was measured and compared between the patient and the control group.
CVST was confirmed in 13 patients. Sensitivity and specificity of NCCT for overall presence of CVST were 100% and 83%, respectively, with Kappa value of 0.72 (a good agreement between observers). The attenuation values between CVST patients and control group were significantly different (73.4 ± 14.12 HU
NCCT as a first-line investigation has a high value for diagnosis of CVST in the emergency setting. The additional measurement of the sinus attenuation may improve the diagnostic value of the examination.
- cerebral venous sinus thrombosis
- computed tomography
- Open Access
Uncertainties in target volume delineation in radiotherapy – are they relevant and what can we do about them?
Page range: 254 - 262
Modern radiotherapy techniques enable delivery of high doses to the target volume without escalating dose to organs at risk, offering the possibility of better local control while preserving good quality of life. Uncertainties in target volume delineation have been demonstrated for most tumour sites, and various studies indicate that inconsistencies in target volume delineation may be larger than errors in all other steps of the treatment planning and delivery process. The aim of this paper is to summarize the degree of delineation uncertainties for different tumour sites reported in the literature and review the effect of strategies to minimize them.
Our review confirmed that interobserver variability in target volume contouring represents the largest uncertainty in the process for most tumour sites, potentially resulting in a systematic error in dose delivery, which could influence local control in individual patients. For most tumour sites the optimal combination of imaging modalities for target delineation still needs to be determined. Strict use of delineation guidelines and protocols is advisable both in every day clinical practice and in clinical studies to diminish interobserver variability. Continuing medical education of radiation oncologists cannot be overemphasized, intensive formal training on interpretation of sectional imaging should be included in the program for radiation oncology residents.
- target volume
- interobserver variability
- delineation uncertainties