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Volume 14, February-1

Cancers, Volume 14, Issue 4 (February-2 2022) – 245 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Cancer is a disease with one of the highest mortality rates worldwide. Of the current strategies to study new diagnostic and treating tools, organs-on-a-chip are quite promising regarding the achievement of more personalized medicine. In this review, 75 out of 820 of the most recent published scientific articles were selected and analyzed through a systematic process, following the research guidelines for systematic reviews proposed by PRISMA. The selected articles present different advanced microfluidic platforms where cell culture models were used for the evaluation of cancer treatments’ efficacy and/or toxicity. Overall, the use of organs-on-a-chip presents several advantages when compared to 2D cultures. The combination of different organ models on a chip also contributes to a more accurate evaluation of drug effects. View this paper
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Review
Toward More Comprehensive Homologous Recombination Deficiency Assays in Ovarian Cancer Part 2: Medical Perspectives
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1098; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041098 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 781
Abstract
High-grade serous ovarian cancer (HGSOC) is the most frequent and aggressive form of ovarian cancer, representing an important challenge for clinicians. Half of HGSOC cases have homologous recombination deficiency (HRD), which has specific causes (mainly alterations in BRCA1/2, but also other alterations [...] Read more.
High-grade serous ovarian cancer (HGSOC) is the most frequent and aggressive form of ovarian cancer, representing an important challenge for clinicians. Half of HGSOC cases have homologous recombination deficiency (HRD), which has specific causes (mainly alterations in BRCA1/2, but also other alterations encompassed by the BRCAness concept) and consequences, both at molecular (e.g., genomic instability) and clinical (e.g., sensitivity to PARP inhibitor) levels. Based on its prevalence and clinical impact, HRD status merits investigation. To date, three PARP inhibitors have received FDA/EMA approval. For some approvals, the presence of specific molecular alterations is required. Three companion diagnostic (CDx) assays based on distinct technical and medical considerations have received FDA approval to date. However, their use remains controversial due to their technical and medical limitations. In this companion and integrated review, we take a “bench-to-bedside” perspective on HRD definition and evaluation in the context of HGSOC. Part 1 of the review adopts a molecular perspective regarding technical considerations and the development of CDx. Part 2 focuses on the clinical impact of HRD evaluation, primarily through currently validated CDx and prescription of PARP inhibitors, outlining achievements, limitations and medical perspectives. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Multi-Omics Approaches in Oncology)
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Article
Outcomes of Different Haploidentical Transplantation Strategies from the Taiwan Blood and Marrow Transplantation Registry
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1097; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041097 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 818
Abstract
Background: The two most noteworthy strategies for haploidentical stem cell transplantation (haplo-HSCT) are posttransplantation cyclophosphamide (PTCy) with or without thymoglobulin (ATG) and granulocyte colony stimulating factor-primed bone marrow plus peripheral blood stem cells (GIAC). We aimed to compare these approaches in patients with [...] Read more.
Background: The two most noteworthy strategies for haploidentical stem cell transplantation (haplo-HSCT) are posttransplantation cyclophosphamide (PTCy) with or without thymoglobulin (ATG) and granulocyte colony stimulating factor-primed bone marrow plus peripheral blood stem cells (GIAC). We aimed to compare these approaches in patients with hematological malignancies. Methods: We enrolled 178 patients undergoing haplo-HSCT, including modified GIAC (mGIAC), PTCy without ATG, and PTCy with ATG. Results: The patients in the mGIAC group had the most favorable platelet and neutrophil engraftment kinetics. Although the grade III–IV acute graft-versus-host-disease (GvHD) rates were similar, those receiving mGIAC had a significantly higher extensive chronic GvHD rate. The patients receiving mGIAC had a similar cumulative incidence of relapse (CIR) to that in the patients receiving PTCy with ATG, but this was lower than that in the patients receiving PTCy without ATG. The patients receiving mGIAC had the lowest nonrelapse mortality (NRM) and the highest overall survival (OS) rates. The differences in CIR, NRM, and OS remained significant when focusing on patients with low/intermediate-risk diseases before haplo-HSCT. Intriguingly, among patients with high/very-high-risk diseases before haplo-HSCT, no differences were observed in the CIR, NRM, OS, or GvHD/relapse-free survival. Conclusion: the mGIAC approach may yield a better outcome in Taiwanese patients with hematologic malignancies, especially for those with low/intermediate-risk diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Autologous and Allogeneic Stem Cell Transplant in Cancer Therapy)
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Review
Salvage Treatment for Progressive Brain Metastases in Breast Cancer
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1096; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041096 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 565
Abstract
Survival of patients with breast cancer has increased in recent years due to the improvement of systemic treatment options. Nevertheless, the occurrence of brain metastases is associated with a poor prognosis. Moreover, most drugs do not penetrate the central nervous system because of [...] Read more.
Survival of patients with breast cancer has increased in recent years due to the improvement of systemic treatment options. Nevertheless, the occurrence of brain metastases is associated with a poor prognosis. Moreover, most drugs do not penetrate the central nervous system because of the blood–brain barrier. Thus, confirmed intracranial progression after local therapy is especially challenging. The available methods of salvage treatment include surgery, stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS), fractionated stereotactic radiotherapy (FSRT), whole-brain radiotherapy, and systemic therapies. This narrative review discusses possible strategies of salvage treatment for progressive brain metastases in breast cancer. It covers possibilities of repeated local treatment using the same method as applied previously, other methods of local therapy, and options of salvage systemic treatment. Repeated local therapy may provide a significant benefit in intracranial progression-free survival and overall survival. However, it could lead to significant toxicity. Thus, the choice of optimal methods should be carefully discussed within the multidisciplinary tumor board. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Brain Metastases in Breast Cancer)
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Article
c-Met and EPHA7 Receptor Tyrosine Kinases Are Related to Prognosis in Clear Cell Renal Cell Carcinoma: Focusing on the Association with Myoferlin Expression
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1095; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041095 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 469
Abstract
Receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs) are important targets for clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC) treatment. Myoferlin is a strong regulator of RTKs. To identify myoferlin-associated RTKs and their prognostic implications in ccRCC, we investigated the expression of RTKs and myoferlin using proteome-based evaluation [...] Read more.
Receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs) are important targets for clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC) treatment. Myoferlin is a strong regulator of RTKs. To identify myoferlin-associated RTKs and their prognostic implications in ccRCC, we investigated the expression of RTKs and myoferlin using proteome-based evaluation and immunohistochemical staining in tissue microarray. Multivariate Cox analysis adjusted for TNM stage and WHO grade was performed (n = 410 and 506). Proteomic analysis suggested c-Met and EPHA7 as novel candidates for myoferlin-associated RTKs. We immunohistochemically validated the positive association between c-Met and myoferlin expression. High c-Met expression was independently associated with overall (hazard ratio (HR) = 1.153–2.919) and cancer-specific survival (HR = 1.150–3.389). The prognostic effect of high c-Met expression was also determined in an independent cohort (overall survival, HR = 1.503–3.771). Although expression of EPHA7 and myoferlin was not correlated, EPHA7 expression was independently associated with progression-free (HR = 1.237–4.319) and cancer-specific survival (HR = 1.214–4.558). In addition, network-based prioritization showed co-functional enrichment of c-Met and myoferlin, suggesting a novel regulatory function of myoferlin in c-Met signaling. This study indicates that c-Met and EPHA7 might be useful prognostic biomarkers, and the presumed myoferlin/c-Met pathway could be a novel therapeutic target in ccRCC. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Prognostic Biomarkers in Conventional Renal Cell Carcinomas)
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Editorial
New Insights in the Genetics and Genomics of Adrenocortical Tumors and Pheochromocytomas
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1094; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041094 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 415
Abstract
This article collection includes 16 scientific papers that present the current state of the art of genetics and genomics research in the fascinating field of adrenal tumors [...] Full article
Article
Mental Health and Quality of Life among Patients with Cancer during the SARS-CoV-2 Pandemic: Results from the Longitudinal ONCOVID Survey Study
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1093; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041093 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 622
Abstract
Purpose: This longitudinal survey study aimed to investigate the self-reported outcome measures of COVID-19 peritraumatic distress, depression, anxiety, stress, quality of life (QOL), and their associated factors in a cohort of cancer patients treated at a tertiary care hospital during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. [...] Read more.
Purpose: This longitudinal survey study aimed to investigate the self-reported outcome measures of COVID-19 peritraumatic distress, depression, anxiety, stress, quality of life (QOL), and their associated factors in a cohort of cancer patients treated at a tertiary care hospital during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. Methods: Surveys were administered at four time points between 1 April 2020 and 18 September 2020. The surveys included the CPDI, DASS-21, and WHOQOL-BREF questionnaires. Results: Survey response rates were high (61.0% to 79.1%). Among the 355 participants, 71.3% were female, and the median age was 62.2 years (IQR, 53.9 to 69.1). The majority (78.6%) were treated with palliative intention. An important proportion of the participants reported symptoms of COVID-19 peritraumatic distress (34.2% to 39.6%), depression (27.6% to 33.5%), anxiety (24.9% to 32.7%), and stress (11.4% to 15.7%) at any time point during the study period. We did not find clinically meaningful mental health and QOL differences during the study period, with remarkably little change in between the pandemic’s first and second wave. We found no consistent correlates of mental health or QOL scores, including cancer type, therapy intention, and sociodemographic information. Conclusion: This cohort of cancer patients showed considerable resilience against mental health and QOL deterioration during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Cancer Nursing and Care)
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Review
Glioblastoma Microenvironment and Cellular Interactions
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1092; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041092 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 754
Abstract
The central nervous system (CNS) represents a complex network of different cells, such as neurons, glial cells, and blood vessels. In tumor pathology, glial cells result in the highest number of cancers, and glioblastoma (GB) is considered the most lethal tumor in this [...] Read more.
The central nervous system (CNS) represents a complex network of different cells, such as neurons, glial cells, and blood vessels. In tumor pathology, glial cells result in the highest number of cancers, and glioblastoma (GB) is considered the most lethal tumor in this region. The development of GB leads to the infiltration of healthy tissue through the interaction between all the elements of the brain network. This results in a GB microenvironment, a complex peritumoral hallo composed of tumor cells and several non-tumor cells (e.g., nervous cells, stem cells, fibroblasts, vascular and immune cells), which might be the principal factor for the ineffective treatment due to the fact that the microenvironment modulates the biologic status of the tumor with the increase in its evasion capacity. Crosstalk between glioma cells and the brain microenvironment finally inhibits the beneficial action of molecular pathways, favoring the development and invasion of the tumor and its increasing resistance to treatment. A deeper understanding of cell–cell interactions in the tumor microenvironment (TME) and with the tumor cells could be the basis for a more efficient therapy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue EMT in Cancer)
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Article
Organotypic Epithelial Raft Cultures as a Three-Dimensional In Vitro Model of Merkel Cell Carcinoma
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1091; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041091 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 567
Abstract
Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is a rare type of skin cancer for which an in vitro model is still lacking. MCC tumorigenesis is associated either with the integration of Merkel cell polyomavirus into the host genome, or with the accumulation of somatic mutations [...] Read more.
Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is a rare type of skin cancer for which an in vitro model is still lacking. MCC tumorigenesis is associated either with the integration of Merkel cell polyomavirus into the host genome, or with the accumulation of somatic mutations upon chronic exposure to UV light. Transgenic animals expressing the viral oncoproteins, which are constitutively expressed in virus-related MCC, do not fully recapitulate MCC. Although cell-line-derived xenografts have been established for the two subtypes of MCC, they still present certain limitations. Here, we generated organotypic epithelial raft cultures (OERCs) of MCC by using primary human keratinocytes and both virus-positive and virus-negative MCC cell lines. The primary human keratinocytes and the tumor cells were grown on top of a dermal equivalent. Histological and immunohistochemical examination of the rafts confirmed the growth of MCC cells. Furthermore, gene expression analysis revealed differences in the expression profiles of the distinct tumor cells and the keratinocytes at the transcriptional level. In summary, considering the limited availability of patient samples, OERCs of MCC may constitute a suitable model for evaluating the efficacy and selectivity of new drug candidates against MCC; moreover, they are a potential tool to study the oncogenic mechanisms of this malignancy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rare Skin Cancers: Recent Advances in Classification and Management)
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Review
The Roles of microRNAs in Cancer Multidrug Resistance
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1090; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041090 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 652
Abstract
Cancer chemotherapy may induce a multidrug resistance (MDR) phenotype. The development of MDR is based on various molecular causes, of which the following are very common: induction of ABC transporter expression; induction/activation of drug-metabolizing enzymes; alteration of the expression/function of apoptosis-related proteins; changes [...] Read more.
Cancer chemotherapy may induce a multidrug resistance (MDR) phenotype. The development of MDR is based on various molecular causes, of which the following are very common: induction of ABC transporter expression; induction/activation of drug-metabolizing enzymes; alteration of the expression/function of apoptosis-related proteins; changes in cell cycle checkpoints; elevated DNA repair mechanisms. Although these mechanisms of MDR are well described, information on their molecular interaction in overall multidrug resistance is still lacking. MicroRNA (miRNA) expression and subsequent RNA interference are candidates that could be important players in the interplay of MDR mechanisms. The regulation of post-transcriptional processes in the proteosynthetic pathway is considered to be a major function of miRNAs. Due to their complementarity, they are able to bind to target mRNAs, which prevents the mRNAs from interacting effectively with the ribosome, and subsequent degradation of the mRNAs can occur. The aim of this paper is to provide an overview of the possible role of miRNAs in the molecular mechanisms that lead to MDR. The possibility of considering miRNAs as either specific effectors or interesting targets for cancer therapy is also analyzed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Roles of microRNAs in Cancer Aggressiveness and Drug Resistance)
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Review
State of the Art and Future Implications of SH003: Acting as a Therapeutic Anticancer Agent
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1089; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041089 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 502
Abstract
Cancer ranks as the first leading cause of death globally. Despite the various types of cancer treatments, negative aspects of the treatments, such as side effects and drug resistance, have been a continuous dilemma for patients. Thus, natural compounds and herbal medicines have [...] Read more.
Cancer ranks as the first leading cause of death globally. Despite the various types of cancer treatments, negative aspects of the treatments, such as side effects and drug resistance, have been a continuous dilemma for patients. Thus, natural compounds and herbal medicines have earned profound interest as chemopreventive agents for reducing burden for patients. SH003, a novel herbal medicine containing Astragalus membranaceus, Angelica gigas, and Trichosanthes kirilowii, showed the potential to act as an anticancer agent in previous research studies. A narrative review was conducted to present the significant highlights of the total 15 SH003 studies from the past nine years. SH003 has shown positive results in both in vivo and vitro studies against various types of cancer cells; furthermore, the first clinical trial was performed to identify the maximum tolerated dose among solid cancer patients. So far, the potential of SH003 as a chemotherapeutic agent has been well-documented in research studies; continuous work on SH003’s efficacy and safety is required to facilitate better cancer patient care but is part of the knowledge needed to understand whether SH003 has the potential to become a pharmaceutical. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Development of Anti-cancer Agents)
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Review
(Neo)Adjuvant Treatment of Locally Advanced Esophageal and Gastroesophageal Adenocarcinoma: Special Focus on Sex Differences
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1088; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041088 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 428
Abstract
Adenocarcinoma of the esophagus and gastroesophageal junction is a common disease. This disease is significantly more prevalent in men, although the main underlying risk factor has an equal sex distribution. In locally advanced disease, multimodal therapy has been developed as the standard in [...] Read more.
Adenocarcinoma of the esophagus and gastroesophageal junction is a common disease. This disease is significantly more prevalent in men, although the main underlying risk factor has an equal sex distribution. In locally advanced disease, multimodal therapy has been developed as the standard in the western world. Neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy or perioperative chemotherapy using the FLOT regimen was established as the standard. Most recently, adjuvant immunotherapy after neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy and surgery has been introduced into the multimodal therapy. Substantial sex-specific differences in outcome in multimodal therapy have been described in retrospective subgroup analysis. Further studies are warranted to dissect the sex-specific differences in these treatment regimens. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current and Future Treatment Strategies for Esophageal Adenocarcinoma)
Article
Circulating Proteins Associated with Response and Resistance to Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy in HER2-Positive Breast Cancer
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1087; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041087 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 611
Abstract
Despite the increasing use of neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC) in HER2-positive breast cancer (BC) patients, the clinical problem of predicting individual treatment response remains unanswered. Furthermore, the use of ineffective chemotherapeutic regimens should be avoided. Serum biomarker levels are being studied more and more [...] Read more.
Despite the increasing use of neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC) in HER2-positive breast cancer (BC) patients, the clinical problem of predicting individual treatment response remains unanswered. Furthermore, the use of ineffective chemotherapeutic regimens should be avoided. Serum biomarker levels are being studied more and more for their ability to predict therapy response and aid in the development of personalized treatment regimens. This study aims to identify effective protein networks and biomarkers to predict response to NAC in HER2-positive BC patients through an exhaustive large-scale LC-MS/MS-based qualitative and quantitative proteomic profiling of serum samples from responders and non-responders. Serum samples from HER2-positive BC patients were collected before NAC and were processed by three methods (with and without nanoparticles). The qualitative analysis revealed differences in the proteomic profiles between responders and non-responders, mainly in proteins implicated in the complement and coagulation cascades and apolipoproteins. Qualitative analysis confirmed that three proteins (AFM, SERPINA1, APOD) were correlated with NAC resistance. In this study, we show that serum biomarker profiles can predict treatment response and outcome in the neoadjuvant setting. If these findings are further developed, they will be of significant clinical utility in the design of treatment regimens for individual BC patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Circulating Biomarkers in Cancer)
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Article
Preoperative Magnetic Resonance Image and Computerized Tomography Findings Predictive of Facial Nerve Invasion in Patients with Parotid Cancer without Preoperative Facial Weakness—A Retrospective Observational Study
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1086; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041086 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 409
Abstract
(1) Background: Facial nerve resection with reconstruction helps achieve optimal outcomes in the treatment of facial nerve invasion (FNI) of parotid cancer. Preoperative imaging is crucial to predict facial nerve reconstruction. The radiological findings of CT or MRI may predict FNI in the [...] Read more.
(1) Background: Facial nerve resection with reconstruction helps achieve optimal outcomes in the treatment of facial nerve invasion (FNI) of parotid cancer. Preoperative imaging is crucial to predict facial nerve reconstruction. The radiological findings of CT or MRI may predict FNI in the parotid cancer even without facial paralysis. Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the records of 151 patients without facial nerve paralysis before surgery who had undergone tumor resection. Previously untreated parotid cancers were included. (2) Results: The median follow-up duration was 62 months (range: 24–120 months). The FNI (+) group (n = 30) showed a significantly worse 5-year overall survival compared with the FNI (−) group (75.5 vs. 93.9%; hazard ratio = 4.19; 95% confidence interval: 1.74–10.08; p = 0.001). The tumor margin, tumor size, presence in the anterolateral parotid region (area 3), retromandibular vein involvement, distance from the stylomastoid foramen to the upper tumor margin, and a high tumor grade were significant factors related to FNI in the univariate analysis. A spiculated tumor margin, the tumor size (2.2 cm), and presence in area 3 were factors predicting FNI in the logistic regression model (p = 0.020, 0.005, and 0.050, respectively; odds ratio: 4.02, 6.40, and 8.16, respectively). (3) Conclusions: The tumor size (≥2.2 cm), spiculated margin, and presence in area 3 as presented in CT and MRI may help clinicians preoperatively predict FNI in patients with parotid cancer and establish an appropriate surgical plan. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Head and Neck Cancer Imaging and Image Analysis)
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Systematic Review
Applications of Frameless Image-Guided Robotic Stereotactic Radiotherapy and Radiosurgery in Pediatric Neuro-Oncology: A Systematic Review
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1085; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041085 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 494
Abstract
Background: CyberKnife-based robotic radiosurgery (RRS) is a widely used treatment modality for various benign and malignant tumors of the central nervous system (CNS) in adults due to its high precision, favorable safety profile, and efficacy. Although RRS is emerging in pediatric neuro-oncology, scientific [...] Read more.
Background: CyberKnife-based robotic radiosurgery (RRS) is a widely used treatment modality for various benign and malignant tumors of the central nervous system (CNS) in adults due to its high precision, favorable safety profile, and efficacy. Although RRS is emerging in pediatric neuro-oncology, scientific evidence for treatment indications, treatment parameters, and patient outcomes is scarce. This systematic review summarizes the current experience and evidence for RRS and robotic stereotactic radiotherapy (RSRT) in pediatric neuro-oncology. Methods: We performed a systematic review based on the databases Ovid Medline, Embase, Cochrane Library, and PubMed to identify studies and published articles reporting on RRS and RSRT treatments in pediatric neuro-oncology. The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines were applied herein. Articles were included if they described the application of RRS and RSRT in pediatric neuro-oncological patients. The quality of the articles was assessed based on their evidence level and their risk for bias using the original as well as an adapted version of the Newcastle Ottawa Quality Assessment Scale (NOS). Only articles published until 1 August 2021, were included. Results: A total of 23 articles were included after final review and removal of duplicates. Articles reported on a broad variety of CNS entities with various treatment indications. A majority of publications lacked substantial sample sizes and a prospective study design. Several reports included adult patients, thereby limiting the possibility of data extraction and analysis of pediatric patients. RRS and RSRT were mostly used in the setting of adjuvant, palliative, and salvage treatments with decent local control rates and acceptable short-to-intermediate-term toxicity. However, follow-up durations were limited. The evidence level was IV for all studies; the NOS score ranged between four and six, while the overall risk of bias was moderate to low. Conclusion: Publications on RRS and RSRT and their application in pediatric neuro-oncology are rare and lack high-quality evidence with respect to entity-related treatment standards and long-term outcomes. The limited data suggest that RRS and RSRT could be efficient treatment modalities, especially for children who are unsuitable for surgical interventions, suffer from tumor recurrences, or require palliative treatments. Nevertheless, the potential short-term and long-term adverse events must be kept in mind when choosing such a treatment. Prospective studies are necessary to determine the actual utility of RRS and RSRT in pediatric neuro-oncology. Full article
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Article
Completion of FLOT Therapy, Regardless of Tumor Regression, Significantly Improves Overall Survival in Patients with Esophageal Adenocarcinoma
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1084; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041084 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 509
Abstract
Esophageal cancer is the eighth most common cancer worldwide, with poor prognosis and high mortality. The combination of surgery and systemic therapy provide the best chances for long-term survival. The purpose of this study was to analyze the impact of the FLOT protocol [...] Read more.
Esophageal cancer is the eighth most common cancer worldwide, with poor prognosis and high mortality. The combination of surgery and systemic therapy provide the best chances for long-term survival. The purpose of this study was to analyze the impact of the FLOT protocol on the overall survival of patients following surgery for esophageal adenocarcinoma, with a focus on the patients who did not benefit in terms of pathological remission from the neoadjuvant therapy. A retrospective analysis of all the patients who underwent esophagectomies from 2012 to 2017 for locally advanced adenocarcinomas of the esophagus at a tertiary medical center was performed. The results show that the completion of systemic therapy, regardless of the tumor regression grading, had a significant positive impact on the overall survival. The patients with complete regression and complete systemic therapy showed the best outcomes. Anastomotic insufficiency did not negatively impact the long-term survival, while complications of the systemic therapy led to significantly reduced overall survival. We conclude that adjuvant systemic therapy should, when possible, always be completed, regardless of the tumor regression, following an esophagectomy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Oesophageal Adenocarcinoma)
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Article
Effective Penetration of a Liposomal Formulation of Bleomycin through Ex-Vivo Skin Explants from Two Different Species
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1083; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041083 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 469
Abstract
Bleomycin is a chemotherapy agent that, when administered systemically, can cause severe pulmonary toxicity. Bleosome is a novel formulation of bleomycin encapsulated in ultra-deformable (UD) liposomes that may be applicable as a topical chemotherapy for diseases such as non-melanoma skin cancer. To date, [...] Read more.
Bleomycin is a chemotherapy agent that, when administered systemically, can cause severe pulmonary toxicity. Bleosome is a novel formulation of bleomycin encapsulated in ultra-deformable (UD) liposomes that may be applicable as a topical chemotherapy for diseases such as non-melanoma skin cancer. To date, the ability of Bleosome to effectively penetrate through the skin has not been evaluated. In this study, we investigated the ability of Bleosome to penetrate through ex vivo skin explants from dogs and horses. We visualized the penetration of UD liposomes through the skin by transmission electron microscopy. However, to effectively image the drug itself we fluorescently labeled bleomycin prior to encapsulation within liposomes and utilized multiphoton microscopy. We showed that UD liposomes do not penetrate beyond the stratum corneum, whereas bleomycin is released from UD liposomes and can penetrate to the deeper layers of the epidermis. This is the first study to show that Bleosome can effectively penetrate through the skin. We speculate that UD liposomes are penetration enhancers in that UD liposomes carry bleomycin through the outer skin to the stratum corneum and then release the drug, allowing diffusion into the deeper layers. Our results are comparative in dogs and horses and warrant further studies on the efficacy of Bleosome as topical treatment. Full article
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Article
Line-Field Confocal Optical Coherence Tomography Increases the Diagnostic Accuracy and Confidence for Basal Cell Carcinoma in Equivocal Lesions: A Prospective Study
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1082; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041082 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 581
Abstract
Diagnosing clinically unclear basal cell carcinomas (BCCs) can be challenging. Line-field confocal optical coherence tomography (LC-OCT) is able to display morphological features of BCC subtypes with good histological correlation. The aim of this study was to investigate the accuracy of LC-OCT in diagnosing [...] Read more.
Diagnosing clinically unclear basal cell carcinomas (BCCs) can be challenging. Line-field confocal optical coherence tomography (LC-OCT) is able to display morphological features of BCC subtypes with good histological correlation. The aim of this study was to investigate the accuracy of LC-OCT in diagnosing clinically unsure cases of BCC compared to dermoscopy alone and in distinguishing between superficial BCCs and other BCC subtypes. Moreover, we addressed pitfalls in false positive cases. We prospectively enrolled 182 lesions of 154 patients, referred to our department to confirm or to rule out the diagnosis of BCC. Dermoscopy and LC-OCT images were evaluated by two experts independently. Image quality, LC-OCT patterns and criteria, diagnosis, BCC subtype, and diagnostic confidence were assessed. Sensitivity and specificity of additional LC-OCT were compared to dermoscopy alone for identifying BCC in clinically unclear lesions. In addition, key LC-OCT features to distinguish between BCCs and non-BCCs and to differentiate superficial BCCs from other BCC subtypes were determined by linear regressions. Diagnostic confidence was rated as “high” in only 48% of the lesions with dermoscopy alone compared to 70% with LC-OCT. LC-OCT showed a high sensitivity (98%) and specificity (80%) compared to histology, and these were even higher (100% sensitivity and 97% specificity) in the subgroup of lesions with high diagnostic confidence. Interobserver agreement was nearly perfect (95%). The combination of dermoscopy and LC-OCT reached a sensitivity of 100% and specificity of 81.2% in all cases and increased to sensitivity of 100% and specificity of 94.9% in cases with a high diagnostic confidence. The performance of LC-OCT was influenced by the image quality but not by the anatomical location of the lesion. The most specific morphological LC-OCT criteria in BCCs compared to non-BCCs were: less defined dermoepidermal junction (DEJ), hyporeflective tumor lobules, and dark rim. The most relevant features of the subgroup of superficial BCCs (sBCCs) were: string of pearls pattern and absence of epidermal thinning. Our diagnostic confidence, sensitivity, and specificity in detecting BCCs in the context of clinically equivocal lesions significantly improved using LC-OCT in comparison to dermoscopy only. Operator training for image acquisition is fundamental to achieve the best results. Not only the differential diagnosis of BCC, but also BCC subtyping can be performed at bedside with LC-OCT. Full article
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Article
Survival Analysis in Endometrial Carcinomas by Type of Surgical Approach: A Matched-Pair Study
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1081; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041081 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 403
Abstract
(1) Background: This study aimed to analyze the impact of surgical approach on survival rates in women diagnosed with endometrial cancer. (2) Methods: A retrospective multicenter cohort of 1382 women diagnosed with EC was performed. A total of 684 (49.5%) women underwent minimally [...] Read more.
(1) Background: This study aimed to analyze the impact of surgical approach on survival rates in women diagnosed with endometrial cancer. (2) Methods: A retrospective multicenter cohort of 1382 women diagnosed with EC was performed. A total of 684 (49.5%) women underwent minimally invasive surgery, 233 (34%) underwent robotic-assisted laparoscopy (RAL), 451 (66%) underwent conventional laparoscopy (LPS), and 698 (50.5%) underwent open surgery (OP). Sociodemographic features, tumor characteristics, and survival rates were analyzed in the whole sample and in a matched-pair model. (3) Results: Women operated on by OP were significantly older, presented more comorbidities, and had more aggressive tumors. Disease-free (DFS), overall (OS), and specific survival related to EC (SS) amounts were significantly higher for MIS compared to OP (p < 0.001). When matched by age, body mass index, comorbidities, ASA score, histological type, grade, myometrial invasion, and FIGO stage, 798 patients were selected. DFS, OS, and SS amounts were similar between the MIS and OP groups. (4) Conclusions: The surgical approach for women with EC does not impact DFS or OS amounts when matched by homogeneous groups. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Endometrial Cancer: Old Questions and New Perspectives)
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Article
NOTCH1 Intracellular Domain and the Tumor Microenvironment as Prognostic Markers in HNSCC
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1080; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041080 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 556
Abstract
(1) Background: NOTCH1 is the second most common mutated gene in whole-exome sequencing of HNSCC. The aim of this project was to gain further insight into the relevance of NOTCH1 in HNSCC, potentially establishing NOTCH1 as a prognostic marker or therapeutic target; (2) [...] Read more.
(1) Background: NOTCH1 is the second most common mutated gene in whole-exome sequencing of HNSCC. The aim of this project was to gain further insight into the relevance of NOTCH1 in HNSCC, potentially establishing NOTCH1 as a prognostic marker or therapeutic target; (2) Methods: NOTCH1 was silenced via RNA interference in six HNSCC cell lines and the impact was evaluated in migration and proliferation assays. Subsequently, the protein expression of NOTCH1 intracellular domain (NICD) and NOTCH1 mRNA expression were examined in 70 oropharyngeal squamous cell cancer tissue samples. Lastly, the NICD expression was compared with the local infiltration of lymphocytes, measured with the immunoscore; (3) Results: Knockdown of NOTCH1 decreased migration and proliferation. A high NICD expression was associated with lower OS. A high immunoscore resulted in significantly better OS. NICD expression was independent of the immunoscore and as a whole differentiated three distinct prognostic groups; (4) Conclusions: These data suggest that NOTCH1 is involved in migration and proliferation of HNSCC cell lines. In vivo, NICD expression was associated with overall survival and could, therefore, be used as a prognostic marker. NICD expression differs from NOTCH1 mRNA levels, potentially explaining the previously suggested bimodal role as an oncogene and tumor suppressor in HNSCC. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nucleic Acids in Cancer Diagnosis and Therapy)
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Article
External Validation of a Radiomics Model for the Prediction of Complete Response to Neoadjuvant Chemoradiotherapy in Rectal Cancer
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1079; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041079 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 545
Abstract
Objective: Our objective was to develop a radiomics model based on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and contrast-enhanced computed tomography (CE-CT) to predict pathological complete response (pCR) to neoadjuvant treatment in locally advanced rectal cancer (LARC). Material: All patients treated for a LARC [...] Read more.
Objective: Our objective was to develop a radiomics model based on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and contrast-enhanced computed tomography (CE-CT) to predict pathological complete response (pCR) to neoadjuvant treatment in locally advanced rectal cancer (LARC). Material: All patients treated for a LARC with neoadjuvant CRT and subsequent surgery in two separate institutions between 2012 and 2019 were considered. Both pre-CRT pelvic MRI and CE-CT were mandatory for inclusion. The tumor was manually segmented on the T2-weighted and diffusion axial MRI sequences and on CE-CT. In total, 88 radiomic parameters were extracted from each sequence using the Miras© software, with a total of 822 features by patient. The cohort was split into training (Institution 1) and testing (Institution 2) sets. The ComBat and Synthetic Minority Over-sampling Technique (SMOTE) approaches were used to account for inter-institution heterogeneity and imbalanced data, respectively. We selected the most predictive characteristics using Spearman’s rank correlation and the Area Under the ROC Curve (AUC). Five pCR prediction models (clinical, radiomics before and after ComBat, and combined before and after ComBat) were then developed on the training set with a neural network approach and a bootstrap internal validation (n = 1000 replications). A cut-off maximizing the model’s performance was defined on the training set. Each model was then evaluated on the testing set using sensitivity, specificity, balanced accuracy (Bacc) with the predefined cut-off. Results: Out of the 124 included patients, 14 had pCR (11.3%). After ComBat harmonization, the radiomic and the combined models obtained a Bacc of 68.2% and 85.5%, respectively, while the clinical model and the pre-ComBat combined achieved respective Baccs of 60.0% and 75.5%. Conclusions: After correction of inter-site variability and imbalanced data, addition of radiomic features enhances the prediction of pCR after neoadjuvant CRT in LARC. Full article
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Review
Knowns and Unknowns about CAR-T Cell Dysfunction
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1078; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041078 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1032
Abstract
Immunotherapy using chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells is a promising option for cancer treatment. However, T cells and CAR-T cells frequently become dysfunctional in cancer, where numerous evasion mechanisms impair antitumor immunity. Cancer frequently exploits intrinsic T cell dysfunction mechanisms that evolved [...] Read more.
Immunotherapy using chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells is a promising option for cancer treatment. However, T cells and CAR-T cells frequently become dysfunctional in cancer, where numerous evasion mechanisms impair antitumor immunity. Cancer frequently exploits intrinsic T cell dysfunction mechanisms that evolved for the purpose of defending against autoimmunity. T cell exhaustion is the most studied type of T cell dysfunction. It is characterized by impaired proliferation and cytokine secretion and is often misdefined solely by the expression of the inhibitory receptors. Another type of dysfunction is T cell senescence, which occurs when T cells permanently arrest their cell cycle and proliferation while retaining cytotoxic capability. The first section of this review provides a broad overview of T cell dysfunctional states, including exhaustion and senescence; the second section is focused on the impact of T cell dysfunction on the CAR-T therapeutic potential. Finally, we discuss the recent efforts to mitigate CAR-T cell exhaustion, with an emphasis on epigenetic and transcriptional modulation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Advances in Chimeric Antigen Receptor Technology)
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Article
Alpha-Emitter Radiopharmaceuticals and External Beam Radiotherapy: A Radiobiological Model for the Combined Treatment
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1077; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041077 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 463
Abstract
Previously published studies combined external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) treatments with different activities of 223Ra. The data of two-year overall survival (2y-OS) and neutropenia (TOX) incidence when combining EBRT and 223Ra are not homogeneous in literature. We adapted the linear–quadratic model (LQ) [...] Read more.
Previously published studies combined external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) treatments with different activities of 223Ra. The data of two-year overall survival (2y-OS) and neutropenia (TOX) incidence when combining EBRT and 223Ra are not homogeneous in literature. We adapted the linear–quadratic model (LQ) to 223Ra therapy using brachytherapy formalism for a mixture of radionuclides, considering the contribution of all daughter isotopes in the decay chain. A virtual cohort of patients undergoing 223Ra therapy was derived using data from the literature. The doses delivered using 223Ra and EBRT were converted into biologically equivalent doses. Fixed-effect logistic regression models were derived for both the 2y-OS and TOX and compared with available literature. Based on the literature search, four studies were identified to have reported the 223Ra injection activity levels varying from the placebo (0) to 80 kBq/kg, associated or not with EBRT. Logistic regression models revealed a dose-dependent increase in both the 2y-OS (intercept = −1.364; slope = 0.006; p-value ≤ 0.05) and TOX (−5.035; 0.018; ≤0.05) using the EBRT schedule of 8 Gy in 1 fr. Similar results were obtained for other schedules. Discrepancies between our TOX model and those derived for EBRT combined with chemotherapy are discussed. Radiobiological models allow us to estimate dose-dependent relationships, to predict the OS and TOX following combined 223Ra + EBRT treatment, which will guide future treatment optimization. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Systematic Review or Meta-Analysis in Cancer Research)
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Article
Lymphatic Function of the Lower Limb after Groin Dissection for Vulvar Cancer and Reconstruction with Lymphatic SCIP Flap
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1076; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041076 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 645
Abstract
Inguinofemoral lymphadenectomy, frequently performed for vulvar cancer, is burdened with substantial immediate and long-term morbidity. One of the most disabling treatment-related sequelae is lower limb lymphedema (LLL). The present study aims to describe the wound complications and the severity of LLL in patients [...] Read more.
Inguinofemoral lymphadenectomy, frequently performed for vulvar cancer, is burdened with substantial immediate and long-term morbidity. One of the most disabling treatment-related sequelae is lower limb lymphedema (LLL). The present study aims to describe the wound complications and the severity of LLL in patients who have undergone groin dissection for vulvar cancer and immediate inguinal reconstruction with the Lymphatic Superficial Circumflex Iliac Perforator flap (L-SCIP). We retrospectively reviewed the data of patients who underwent bilateral groin dissection and unilateral inguinal reconstruction with the L-SCIP. The presence and severity of postoperative LLL during the follow-up period were assessed by lymphoscintigraphy and limbs’ volume measurement. In addition, immediate complications at the level of the inguinal area were registered. The changes between preoperative and postoperative limb volumes were analyzed by Student’s t test. p values < 0.05 were considered significant. Thirty-one patients were included. The mean variation of volume was 479 ± 330 cc3 in the side where groin reconstruction had been performed, and 683 ± 425 cc3 in the contralateral side, showing smaller variation in the treated side (p = 0.022). Lymphoscintigraphy confirmed the clinical findings. Based on our results, inguinal reconstruction with L-SCIP performed at the same time of groin dissection in patients treated for vulvar cancer can provide a significant protective effect on LLL. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Vulvar Cancer)
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Article
Test/Retest Reliability and Validity of Remote vs. In-Person Anthropometric and Physical Performance Assessments in Cancer Survivors and Supportive Partners
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1075; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041075 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 658
Abstract
(1) Background: Anthropometric and physical performance testing is commonly done in lifestyle research and is traditionally performed in-person. To expand the scalability of lifestyle interventions among cancer survivors, in-person assessments were adapted to remote means and evaluated for feasibility, safety, validity, and reliability. [...] Read more.
(1) Background: Anthropometric and physical performance testing is commonly done in lifestyle research and is traditionally performed in-person. To expand the scalability of lifestyle interventions among cancer survivors, in-person assessments were adapted to remote means and evaluated for feasibility, safety, validity, and reliability. (2) Methods: Cancer survivors and supportive partners were approached to participate in three anthropometric and physical performance testing sessions (two remote/one in-person). Correlations, concordance, and differences between testing modes were evaluated. (3) Results: 110-of-112 individuals approached for testing participated (98% uptake); the sample was 78% female, 64% non-Hispanic White, of mean age 58 years and body mass index = 32.4 kg/m2. ICCs for remote assessments ranged from moderate (8’ walk = 0.47), to strong (8’ get-up-and-go = 0.74), to very strong (30 s chair stand = 0.80; sit-and-reach = 0.86; 2 min step test = 0.87; back scratch = 0.90; weight = 0.93; waist circumference = 0.98) (p-values < 0.001). Perfect concordance (100%) was found for side-by-side and semi-tandem balance, and 87.5–90.3% for tandem balance. No significant differences between remote and in-person assessments were found for weight, 8’ walk, and 8’ get-up-and-go. No adverse events occurred and 75% indicated no preference or preferred virtual testing to in-person. (4) Conclusions: Remote anthropometric and physical performance assessments are reliable, valid, acceptable, and safe among cancer survivors and supportive partners. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of Lifestyle-Related Factors in Cancer Survivorship)
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Article
Comparative Panel Sequencing of DNA Variants in cf-, ev- and tumorDNA for Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma Patients
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1074; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041074 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 587
Abstract
Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas (PDACs) are tumors with poor prognosis and limited treatment options. Personalized medicine aims at characterizing actionable DNA variants by next-generation sequencing, thereby improving treatment strategies and outcomes. Fine-needle tumor biopsies are currently the gold standard to acquire samples for DNA [...] Read more.
Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas (PDACs) are tumors with poor prognosis and limited treatment options. Personalized medicine aims at characterizing actionable DNA variants by next-generation sequencing, thereby improving treatment strategies and outcomes. Fine-needle tumor biopsies are currently the gold standard to acquire samples for DNA profiling. However, liquid biopsies have considerable advantages as they are minimally invasive and frequently obtainable and thus may help to monitor tumor evolution over time. However, which liquid analyte works best for this purpose is currently unclear. Our study aims to directly compare tumor-, circulating free (cf-) and extracellular vesicle-derived (ev)DNA by panel sequencing of matching patient material. We evaluated copy number variations (CNVs), single nucleotide variants (SNVs) and insertions and deletions (indels). Our data show that evDNA contains significantly larger DNA fragments up to 5.5 kb, in line with previous observations. Stringent bioinformatic processing revealed a significant advantage of evDNA with respect to cfDNA concerning detection performance for SNVs and a numerical increase for indels. A combination of ev- and cfDNA was clearly superior for SNV detection, as compared to either single analyte, thus potentially improving actionable variant prediction upon further optimization. Finally, calling of CNVs from liquid biopsies still remained challenging and uninformative. Full article
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Systematic Review
A Global Evaluation of the Performance Indicators of Colorectal Cancer Screening with Fecal Immunochemical Tests and Colonoscopy: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1073; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041073 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 744
Abstract
(1) Background: To summarize the achievements of the performance indicators of colorectal cancer (CRC) screening programs that used the fecal immunochemical test (FIT) as a primary screening modality and colonoscopy as a subsequent confirmatory test. (2) Methods: PubMed, Ovid MEDLINE, Embase, and Cochrane [...] Read more.
(1) Background: To summarize the achievements of the performance indicators of colorectal cancer (CRC) screening programs that used the fecal immunochemical test (FIT) as a primary screening modality and colonoscopy as a subsequent confirmatory test. (2) Methods: PubMed, Ovid MEDLINE, Embase, and Cochrane were searched from inception to September 2020. We included original articles published in English, and performed hand searching for relevant national reports. We generated pooled achievement estimates of the performance indicators by “metaprop” (R software 3.6.3). Meta-regression analyses and subgroup analyses were also conducted. (3) Results: We included 93 studies involving nearly 90 million people-times. The participation rate ranged from 6.80% to 95.98%, which was associated with study type, continents, FIT number, age, and round. The pooled FIT invalid rate and positivity rate were 1.08% and 7.28%, respectively. The pooled estimates of FIT detection were 2.26% for adenoma, 1.26% for advanced adenoma, and 0.28% for CRC. In addition, only seven studies reported that their colonoscopy compliance rate reached 90% among 69 studies. The colonoscopy completion rate (21/40 studies > 95%) and the complication rate (18/27 studies < 0.5%) were acceptable. (4) Conclusions: Our findings could help to identify the areas that could be improved and finally optimize the CRC screening programs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Colorectal Cancer Early Detection, Diagnosis, and Staging)
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Article
The Impact of Frailty Screening on Radiation Treatment Modification
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1072; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041072 - 21 Feb 2022
Viewed by 485
Abstract
Background: Care overburden makes it difficult to perform comprehensive geriatric assessments (CGAs) in oncology settings. We analyzed if screening tools modified radiotherapy in oncogeriatric patients. Methods: Patients ≥ 65 years, irradiated between December 2020 and March 2021 at the Hospital Provincial de Castellón, [...] Read more.
Background: Care overburden makes it difficult to perform comprehensive geriatric assessments (CGAs) in oncology settings. We analyzed if screening tools modified radiotherapy in oncogeriatric patients. Methods: Patients ≥ 65 years, irradiated between December 2020 and March 2021 at the Hospital Provincial de Castellón, completed the frailty G8 and estimated survival Charlson questionnaires. The cohort was stratified between G8 score ≤ 14 (fragile) or >14 (robust); the cutoff point for the Charlson index was established at five. Results: Of 161 patients; 69.4% were male, the median age was 75 years (range 65–91), and the prevailing performance status (PS) was 0–1 (83.1%). Overall, 28.7% of the cohort were frail based on G8 scores, while the estimated survival at 10 years was 2.25% based on the Charlson test. The treatment administered changed up to 21% after frailty analysis. The therapies prescribed were 5.8 times more likely to be modified in frail patients based on the G8 test. In addition, patients ≥ 85 years (p = 0.01), a PS ≥ 2 (p = 0.008), and limited mobility (p = 0.024) were also associated with a potential change. Conclusions: CGAs remain the optimal assessment tool in oncogeriatry. However, we found that the G8 fragility screening test, which is easier to integrate into patient consultations, is a reliable and efficient aid to rapid decision making. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Palliative and Supportive Care in Oncology: An Update)
Article
ADCK2 Knockdown Affects the Migration of Melanoma Cells via MYL6
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1071; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041071 - 20 Feb 2022
Viewed by 660
Abstract
Background: ADCK2 is a member of the AarF domain-containing kinase family, which consists of five members, and has been shown to play a role in CoQ metabolism. However, ADCKs have also been connected to cancer cell survival, proliferation and motility. In this study, [...] Read more.
Background: ADCK2 is a member of the AarF domain-containing kinase family, which consists of five members, and has been shown to play a role in CoQ metabolism. However, ADCKs have also been connected to cancer cell survival, proliferation and motility. In this study, we investigated the role of ADCK2 in melanoma. Methods: The effect of ADCK2 on melanoma cell motility was evaluated by a scratch assay and a transwell invasion assay upon siRNA-mediated knockdown or stable overexpression of ADCK2. Results: We found that high levels of intratumoral ADCK2 and MYL6 are associated with a higher survival rate in melanoma patients. Knocking down ADCK2 resulted in enhanced cell migration of melanoma cells. Moreover, ADCK2-knockdown cells adopted a more dedifferentiated phenotype. A gene expression array revealed that the expression of ADCK2 correlated with the expressions of MYL6 and RAB2A. Knocking down MYL6 in ADCK2-overexpressing cells could abrogate the effect of ADCK2 overexpression and thus confirm the functional connection between ADCK2 and MYL6. Conclusion: ADCK2 affects melanoma cell motility, most probably via MYL6. Our results allow the conclusion that ADCK2 could act as a tumor suppressor in melanoma. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epidemiology and Biological Features of Melanoma)
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Article
Combination of Resminostat with Ruxolitinib Exerts Antitumor Effects in the Chick Embryo Chorioallantoic Membrane Model for Cutaneous T Cell Lymphoma
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1070; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041070 - 20 Feb 2022
Viewed by 779
Abstract
The combination of Resminostat (HDACi) and Ruxolitinib (JAKi) exerted cytotoxic effects and inhibited proliferation of CTCL cell lines (MyLa, SeAx) in previously published work. A xenograft tumor formation was produced by implanting the MyLa or SeAx cells on top of the chick embryo [...] Read more.
The combination of Resminostat (HDACi) and Ruxolitinib (JAKi) exerted cytotoxic effects and inhibited proliferation of CTCL cell lines (MyLa, SeAx) in previously published work. A xenograft tumor formation was produced by implanting the MyLa or SeAx cells on top of the chick embryo chorioallantoic membrane (CAM). The CAM assay protocol was developed to monitor the metastatic properties of CTCL cells and the effects of Resminostat and/or Ruxolitinib in vivo. In the spontaneous CAM assays, Resminostat and Ruxolitinib treatment inhibited the cell proliferation (p < 0.001) of MyLa and SeAx, and induced cell apoptosis (p < 0.005, p < 0.001, respectively). Although monotherapies reduced the size of primary tumors in the metastasis CAM assay, the drug combination exhibited a significant inhibition of primary tumor size (p < 0.0001). Furthermore, the combined treatment inhibited the intravasation of MyLa (p < 0.005) and SeAx cells (p < 0.0001) in the organs, as well as their extravasation to the liver (p < 0.0001) and lung (p < 0.0001). The drug combination also exerted a stronger inhibitory effect in migration (p < 0.0001) rather in invasion (p < 0.005) of both MyLa and SeAx cells. It further reduced p-p38, p-ERK, p-AKT, and p-STAT in MyLa cells, while it decreased p-ERK and p-STAT in SeAx cells in CAM tumors. Our data demonstrated that the CAM assay could be employed as a preclinical in vivo model in CTCL for pharmacological testing. In agreement with previous in vitro data, the combination of Resminostat and Ruxolitinib was shown to exert antitumor effects in CTCL in vivo. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cutaneous Lymphomas)
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Review
Use of Patient-Derived Organoids as a Treatment Selection Model for Colorectal Cancer: A Narrative Review
Cancers 2022, 14(4), 1069; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/cancers14041069 - 20 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 903
Abstract
Surgical resection is the mainstay in intended curative treatment of colorectal cancer (CRC) and may be accompanied by adjuvant chemotherapy. However, 40% of the patients experience recurrence within five years of treatment, highlighting the importance of improved, personalized treatment options. Monolayer cell cultures [...] Read more.
Surgical resection is the mainstay in intended curative treatment of colorectal cancer (CRC) and may be accompanied by adjuvant chemotherapy. However, 40% of the patients experience recurrence within five years of treatment, highlighting the importance of improved, personalized treatment options. Monolayer cell cultures and murine models, which are generally used to study the biology of CRC, are associated with certain drawbacks; hence, the use of organoids has been emerging. Organoids obtained from tumors display similar genotypic and phenotypic characteristics, making them ideal for investigating individualized treatment strategies and for integration as a core platform to be used in prediction models. Here, we review studies correlating the clinical response in patients with CRC with the therapeutic response in patient-derived organoids (PDO), as well as the limitations and potentials of this model. The studies outlined in this review reported strong associations between treatment responses in the PDO model and clinical treatment responses. However, as PDOs lack the tumor microenvironment, they do not genuinely account for certain crucial characteristics that influence therapeutic response. To this end, we reviewed studies investigating PDOs co-cultured with tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes. This model is a promising method allowing evaluation of patient-specific tumors and selection of personalized therapies. Standardized methodologies must be implemented to reach a “gold standard” for validating the use of this model in larger cohorts of patients. The introduction of this approach to a clinical scenario directing neoadjuvant treatment and in other curative and palliative treatment strategies holds incredible potential for improving personalized treatment and its outcomes. Full article
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