A study for evaluating clinical relevance of circulating cell-free DNA in cervical cancer
Anju Shrivastava1, Garima Singh2, Kumud Tiwari2, Surendra Pratap Mishra3, Satyajit Pradhan4, Lalit Mohan Agarwal1, Samarendra Kumar Singh2
1 Department of Radiotherapy and Radiation Medicine, Sir Sunderlal Hospital, Institute of Medical Sciences, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India
2 Molecular Biology Unit, Institute of Medical Sciences, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India
3 Department of Biochemistry, Institute of Medical Sciences, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India
4 Mahamana Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya Cancer Centre, Homi Bhabha Cancer Hospital, Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, India
Samarendra Kumar Singh,
Molecular Biology Unit, Institute of Medical Sciences, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi - 221 005, Uttar Pradesh
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
Introduction: Recent techniques available for the detection of cervical cancer (CC) are highly invasive and costly, which makes it a rate-limiting step toward early diagnosis of this fatal disease. Evaluation of circulating cell-free DNA (ccfDNA) through liquid biopsy is a minimally invasive and cost-effective method that may serve as a unique tumor marker for early detection, treatment monitoring, the status of residual disease, and distant tumor metastasis in CC patients.
Materials and Methods: In this study, initially, ccfDNA was measured in serum samples from 11 histopathologically proven cervix carcinoma patients and 8 controls. On successful screening, it was further extended to 2 more patients with a series of serum samples extracted at 3 different phases of the concurrent chemoradiotherapy (i.e., before, during, and after 6 months of follow-up).
Results: Agarose gel electrophoresis profile for ccfDNA of CC patients showed that of 11 patients, 4 patients had a comparatively higher tumor burden (ccfDNA) than the other 7 patients. Notably, during concurrent chemoradiotherapy, ccfDNA load disappeared and, after 6 months of follow-up, appeared back due to distant metastasis.
Conclusion: Hence, we propose that this method could be an affordable and reliable way to diagnose/screen CC.