Publications by authors named "Cathrine Holland"

18 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Radiotherapy Versus Inguinofemoral Lymphadenectomy as Treatment for Vulvar Cancer Patients With Micrometastases in the Sentinel Node: Results of GROINSS-V II.

J Clin Oncol 2021 Aug 25:JCO2100006. Epub 2021 Aug 25.

James Cook University Hospital, South Tees NHS Foundation Trust, Middlesbrough, United Kingdom.

Purpose: The Groningen International Study on Sentinel nodes in Vulvar cancer (GROINSS-V)-II investigated whether inguinofemoral radiotherapy is a safe alternative to inguinofemoral lymphadenectomy (IFL) in vulvar cancer patients with a metastatic sentinel node (SN).

Methods: GROINSS-V-II was a prospective multicenter phase-II single-arm treatment trial, including patients with early-stage vulvar cancer (diameter < 4 cm) without signs of lymph node involvement at imaging, who had primary surgical treatment (local excision with SN biopsy). Where the SN was involved (metastasis of any size), inguinofemoral radiotherapy was given (50 Gy). The primary end point was isolated groin recurrence rate at 24 months. Stopping rules were defined for the occurrence of groin recurrences.

Results: From December 2005 until October 2016, 1,535 eligible patients were registered. The SN showed metastasis in 322 (21.0%) patients. In June 2010, with 91 SN-positive patients included, the stopping rule was activated because the isolated groin recurrence rate in this group went above our predefined threshold. Among 10 patients with an isolated groin recurrence, nine had SN metastases > 2 mm and/or extracapsular spread. The protocol was amended so that those with SN macrometastases (> 2 mm) underwent standard of care (IFL), whereas patients with SN micrometastases (≤ 2 mm) continued to receive inguinofemoral radiotherapy. Among 160 patients with SN micrometastases, 126 received inguinofemoral radiotherapy, with an ipsilateral isolated groin recurrence rate at 2 years of 1.6%. Among 162 patients with SN macrometastases, the isolated groin recurrence rate at 2 years was 22% in those who underwent radiotherapy, and 6.9% in those who underwent IFL ( = .011). Treatment-related morbidity after radiotherapy was less frequent compared with IFL.

Conclusion: Inguinofemoral radiotherapy is a safe alternative for IFL in patients with SN micrometastases, with minimal morbidity. For patients with SN macrometastasis, radiotherapy with a total dose of 50 Gy resulted in more isolated groin recurrences compared with IFL.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1200/JCO.21.00006DOI Listing
August 2021

Uptake and efficacy of bilateral risk reducing surgery in unaffected female and carriers.

J Med Genet 2021 Feb 10. Epub 2021 Feb 10.

Manchester Centre for Genomic Medicine, Central Manchester NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester, UK

Background: Women testing positive for pathogenic variants have high lifetime risks of breast cancer (BC) and ovarian cancer. The effectiveness of risk reducing surgery (RRS) has been demonstrated in numerous previous studies. We evaluated long-term uptake, timing and effectiveness of risk reducing mastectomy (RRM) and bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy (RRSO) in healthy carriers.

Methods: Women were prospectively followed up from positive genetic test (GT) result to censor date. χ² testing compared categorical variables; Cox regression model estimated HRs and 95% CI for BC/ovarian cancer cases associated with RRS, and impact on all-cause mortality; Kaplan-Meier curves estimated cumulative RRS uptake. The annual cancer incidence was estimated by women-years at risk.

Results: In total, 887 women were included in this analysis. Mean follow-up was 6.26 years (range=0.01-24.3; total=4685.4 women-years). RRS was performed in 512 women, 73 before GT. Overall RRM uptake was 57.9% and RRSO uptake was 78.6%. The median time from GT to RRM was 18.4 months, and from GT to RRSO-10.0 months. Annual BC incidence in the study population was 1.28%. Relative BC risk reduction (RRM versus non-RRM) was 94%. Risk reduction of ovarian cancer (RRSO versus non-RRSO) was 100%.

Conclusion: Over a 24-year period, we observed an increasing number of women opting for RRS. We showed that the timing of RRS remains suboptimal, especially in women undergoing RRSO. Both RRM and RRSO showed a significant effect on relevant cancer risk reduction. However, there was no statistically significant RRSO protective effect on BC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jmedgenet-2020-107356DOI Listing
February 2021

Specialist oncological surgery for removal of the ovaries and fallopian tubes in BRCA1 and BRCA2 pathogenic variant carriers may reduce primary peritoneal cancer risk to very low levels.

Int J Cancer 2021 03 11;148(5):1155-1163. Epub 2020 Nov 11.

Division of Evolution and Genomic Sciences, School of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health, University of Manchester, Manchester Academic Health Science Centre, Manchester, UK.

Risk-reducing bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy (RRBSO) is highly effective for the prevention of high-grade serous ovarian cancer (HGSOC) in BRCA1/2 pathogenic variant carriers (PVCs), but does not completely eliminate future risk of primary peritoneal cancer (PPC). The requirement to completely remove fallopian tubes at RRBSO and carefully exclude occult cancer/serous tubal intraepithelial carcinoma (STIC) lesions may not have been appreciated historically. We calculated rates of HGSOC and PPC in confirmed BRCA1/2 PVCs registered on the regional database in those who did (cases) and did not (controls) undergo RRBSO after genetic testing. Expected annual rates of ovarian/peritoneal cancer were 1% for BRCA1 ≥ 35 years and 0.5% for BRCA2 ≥ 45 years. Follow-up before 35/45 years was "risk free" and lead time excluded RRBSO <35 years and <45 years for BRCA1 and BRCA2, respectively. Women were followed from personal mutation report (controls) or RRBSO (cases) to death, ovarian/peritoneal cancer or last follow-up, whichever was sooner. In total, 891 cases (BRCA1 = 468, BRCA2 = 423) and 1302 controls had follow-up ≥35 years (BRCA1 = 736) and ≥45 years (BRCA2 = 566), respectively, over a total of 7261.1 risk eligible years (mean = 8.15 years). Twenty-one occult ovarian cancers were found at RRBSO (2.4%), 16 at stage 1. Post RRBSO, 56.97 ovarian/peritoneal cancers were expected but only 3 were observed (HR = 0.053; 95% CI = 0.013-0.14), with combined Kaplan-Meier analysis HR = 0.029 (95% CI = 0.009-0.100, P < .001). Risk reduction was greater in specialist (HR = 0.03; 95% CI = 0.001-0.13) compared to non-specialist centres (HR = 0.11; 95% CI = 0.02-0.37) (P = .07). In controls, 23.35 ovarian/peritoneal cancers were expected with 32 observed (HR = 1.37; 95% CI = 0.95-1.91). RRBSO <35/<45 years reduces the risk of ovarian/peritoneal cancer by 95% in BRCA1/2 PVCs and may be greater in specialist centres.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ijc.33378DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7839461PMC
March 2021

British Gynaecological Cancer Society (BGCS) cervical cancer guidelines: Recommendations for practice.

Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol 2021 Jan 29;256:433-465. Epub 2020 Sep 29.

Imperial College, London, United Kingdom.

Cervix cancer in many countries is declining and screening programmes and immunisation will reduce the incidence in the next few decades. This guideline attempts to cover management of invasive disease reflecting diagnosis and imaging including new imaging and sentinel lymph node biopsies. Smaller volume disease is usually managed surgically whereas advanced disease is treated with (chemo)- radiation. It also includes discussion of fertility sparing procedures. Practices are changing frequently for all aspects of care usually in attempts to reduce complications and improve quality of life. The management of advanced disease is treated by chemotherapy and the use of newer agents is also discussed. Other sections discuss specialist situations such as cancer in pregnancy, rare cervical tumours, late effects and supportive measures and fertility preserving approaches.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejogrb.2020.08.020DOI Listing
January 2021

Tumor Suppression in Asymptomatic Postmenopausal Endometrial Polyps.

Anticancer Res 2020 Feb;40(2):789-794

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Manchester and St. Mary's Hospital, Manchester, U.K.

Background/aim: To investigate tumor suppression as an indicator of malignization potential within endometrial polyps in asymptomatic postmenopausal women.

Materials And Methods: Immunohistochemical studies of the phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN) were performed. Cases included 52 benign postmenopausal polyps, 19 endometrioid carcinomas with coexisting benign polyps, and 12 polyps with foci of carcinoma. Controls included 31 atrophic endometria and 32 benign premenopausal polyps. PTEN was scored by quantitative methods according to staining intensity.

Results: The mean epithelial and stromal PTEN H-score in postmenopausal benign endometrial polyps (193.8 and 123.2, respectively) was significantly higher than that in the atrophic endometrium (135.5 and 90.2, p=0.008), and premenopausal benign endometrial polyps (100.7 and 198.7, p<0.001). Significant difference between postmenopausal endometrial polyps and endometrial carcinoma was noticed in the epithelial compartment (193.8 vs. 65.7, respectively, p<0.001).

Conclusion: Asymptomatic benign postmenopausal polyps have a distinctively high tumor suppression compared with endometrial cancer, suggesting low malignization potential.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.21873/anticanres.14010DOI Listing
February 2020

Proliferation in Postmenopausal Endometrial Polyps-A Potential for Malignant Transformation.

Medicina (Kaunas) 2019 Aug 28;55(9). Epub 2019 Aug 28.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Manchester and St. Mary's Hospital, Manchester M13 9WL, UK.

Endometrial polyps in asymptomatic postmenopausal women are often incidentally found, yet only 1.51% of them are malignant. Their potential for malignant transformation has not been adequately addressed. The aim of this study was to investigate the proliferation within endometrial polyps as one of the indicators of their malignization potential in asymptomatic postmenopausal women. Immunohistochemical studies of Ki-67 were performed. Cases included 52 benign postmenopausal polyps, 19 endometrioid carcinoma with coexisting benign polyps, 12 polyps with foci of carcinoma and 4 cases of polyps, which later developed carcinoma. The control group included 31 atrophic endometria and 32 benign premenopausal polyps. Ki-67 was scored in either 10 or 20 "hot spot" fields, as percentage of positively stained cells. Results: The median epithelial Ki-67 score in postmenopausal benign polyps (4.7%) was significantly higher than in atrophic endometria (2.41%, < 0.0001) and significantly lower than in premenopausal benign polyps (11.4%, = 0.003) and endometrial cancer (8.3%, < 0.0001). Where endometrial polyps were found in association with endometrial carcinoma, Ki-67 was significantly higher in cancer ( < 0.0001). No significant difference was found between Ki-67 scores of cancer focus and of the polyps tissue itself, respectively 2.8% and 4.55%, = 0.37. Ki-67 expression, where polyps were resected and women later developed cancer, was not significantly different ( = 0.199). Conclusion: Polyps from asymptomatic postmenopausal women showed significantly more proliferation in both epithelial and stromal components than inactive atrophic endometria but less than premenopausal benign polyps and/or endometrial cancer. Benign postmenopausal endometrial polyps exhibit low proliferative activity, suggesting low malignant potential and may not require resection in asymptomatic women.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/medicina55090543DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6780687PMC
August 2019

Obstructive sleep apnea and postoperative complications among patients undergoing gynecologic oncology surgery.

Int J Gynaecol Obstet 2017 Jul 17;138(1):69-73. Epub 2017 Apr 17.

Department of Gynaecology, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK.

Objective: To investigate the prevalence of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), physiological or risk factors associated with OSA, and OSA-associated postoperative complications among patients undergoing gynecologic oncology surgery.

Methods: A prospective observational study enrolled gynecologic oncology patients undergoing abdominal surgery at a center in the UK between August 2009 and January 2013. All patients underwent perioperative sleep oximetry for the diagnosis of OSA. Data assessed included the body mass index, the STOP-Bang score, the Epworth Sleepiness Scale score, the apnea-hypopnea index, and postoperative complications. Associations were determined between preoperative OSA and postoperative OSA, postoperative complications, and risk factors such as body mass index, age, STOP-Bang score, and Epworth score.

Results: Among 160 participants, 72 (45.0%) were obese and 80 (50.0%) had OSA. Obesity, older age (more than 65 years), and a neck circumference of 40 cm or more were significantly associated with OSA. Overall, 58 (36.3%) patients had postoperative complications; 21 (13.1%) had surgical complications and 37 (23.1%) had medical complications. Complications were not associated with OSA (P=0.612). Four (2.5%) patients died; mortality was not associated with OSA (P=0.810).

Conclusion: OSA is common among gynecologic oncology patients. Portable sleep oximetry identifies gynecology patients who have OSA or require postoperative critical care. Obesity is associated with OSA, but OSA is not associated with postoperative complications in gynecologic oncology patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ijgo.12160DOI Listing
July 2017

Perioperative nutrition interventions for women with ovarian cancer.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2013 Sep 11(9):CD009884. Epub 2013 Sep 11.

Dietetic Department, Platt 2 Rehabilitation, Manchester Royal Infirmary, Oxford Road, Manchester, UK, M13 9WL.

Background: Women with ovarian cancer have been shown to be at significant risk of malnutrition with incidence rates described as being between 28% to 67%. Nutrition interventions may improve clinical outcomes positively, nutritional status or quality of life measures in this patient group.

Objectives: This review was conducted to assess the effects of nutrition interventions during the perioperative period for women with ovarian cancer.

Search Methods: Electronic searches were conducted of the Cochrane Gynaecological Cancer Group Specialised Register, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL 2012, Issue 7), Medline (1946 to July week 4 2012), Embase (1980 to 2012 week 31), DARE (to 7th August 2012) AMED (1985 to April 2012), BNI (1992 to April 2012), CINAHL (to April 2012). We also searched trials databases, conference proceedings and related citation lists. Reference listings were handsearched. No restrictions were applied on language or date.

Selection Criteria: Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) in which women 18 years and over with any stage of ovarian cancer, including recurrent cancer, were in the perioperative phase of treatment and received any type of nutrition intervention.

Data Collection And Analysis: Titles and abstracts were screened by two review authors with study selection discussed by a team. Pairs of review authors worked independently on data collection and compared findings.

Main Results: A total of 4092 titles were screened and 14 full text reports reviewed; a single small study met the inclusion criteria. In the included RCT, 40 women (35 with ovarian cancer) had extensive elective surgery including bowel resection for treatment of gynaecological malignancy. Randomisation was made to either early oral feeding (oral fluids in the first 24 hours, solid foods on the following day) or to a 'traditional' feeding regimen where oral fluids and foods were delayed until there was evidence of bowel function. Most women in the early feeding group (14/18) were able to resume eating solid food one day after surgery. This resulted in a significantly shorter hospital stay with no increase in postoperative complications or change in quality of life measures in comparison with the women on the 'traditional' feeding regimen. The incidence of nausea and vomiting during the postoperative stay was similar in both groups and was noted in slightly more than half of the women. Overall survival was evaluated until 30 days following discharge from hospital; in this period, there was one death of a woman who had been in the 'traditional oral feeding' group, cause of death was not noted. We assessed risk of bias and found no high risk of bias was identified in the methodology and reporting of the included study, although there was an increased risk of bias due to the small size of the study in which not all of the women had ovarian cancer.

Authors' Conclusions: Although women with ovarian cancer have been shown to be at risk of malnutrition, there is a lack of evidence derived from RCTs evaluating the identification, assessment and treatment of malnutrition during the perioperative phase of treatment. There is evidence from one small study that some women with ovarian cancer undergoing surgery with associated bowel resection may safely commence oral fluids within 24 hours of surgery and solid foods on the following day. Further research is required, including a RCT, to generate guidance concerning the treatment of malnutrition in this patient group.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD009884.pub2DOI Listing
September 2013

Managing unscheduled bleeding in non-pregnant premenopausal women.

BMJ 2013 Jun 4;346:f3251. Epub 2013 Jun 4.

Department of Reproductive and Maternal Medicine, University of Glasgow, Glasgow G4 0SF, UK.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f3251DOI Listing
June 2013

Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors modulate proliferation and angiogenesis in human endometrial carcinoma.

Mol Cancer Res 2012 Mar 28;10(3):441-53. Epub 2011 Dec 28.

School of Cancer and Enabling Sciences, The University of Manchester, Manchester Academic Health Science Centre, Central Manchester University Hospitals Foundation Trust, Oxford Road, Manchester M13 9WL, England, United Kingdom.

Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPAR) and retinoid X receptors (RXR) are implicated in the development of several obesity-related cancers. Little is known of either the expression or function of PPARs and RXRs in endometrial cancer although this increasingly common disease is highly associated with both obesity and insulin resistance. We investigated the expression of PPAR and RXR subtypes in human endometrial cancers and normal endometrium with immunoblotting and immunohistochemistry and subsequently showed PPAR/RXR binding preferences by coimmunoprecipitation. To determine the functions of PPARs within the endometrium, we investigated proliferation, apoptosis, PTEN expression, and secretion of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in endometrial cell lines after reducing the expression of PPARα and PPARγ with antisense RNA. The functional effects of PPAR ligands were also investigated in vitro. We identified differential expression of PPAR and RXR subtypes in endometrial cancers and discovered that PPARγ expression correlated with expression of PTEN. PPARα activation influences endometrial cell growth and VEGF secretion. PPARγ activation reduces proliferation of endometrial cells via regulation of PTEN and appears to reduce VEGF secretion. We conclude that the PPAR/RXR pathway contribute to endometrial carcinogenesis by control of PTEN expression and modulation of VEGF secretion. We propose that PPAR ligands should be considered for clinical investigation in early phase studies of women with endometrial cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1541-7786.MCR-11-0233DOI Listing
March 2012

Unresolved issues in the management of endometrial cancer.

Authors:
Cathrine Holland

Expert Rev Anticancer Ther 2011 Jan;11(1):57-69

University of Manchester School of Cancer and Enabling Sciences, St Mary's Hospital, Oxford Road, Manchester, UK.

Endometrial cancers are the most common gynecological malignancies in developed countries. Surgery is the main treatment modality but radiotherapy and, increasingly, chemotherapy are used to treat women with advanced disease and those at high risk of recurrence. Although the treatment of endometrial cancer is becoming increasingly evidence based, there remains a lack of consensus in several aspects of management. These include issues related to the type and extent of surgery and the role of adjuvant treatments as well as more conservative treatment options for younger women. This article discusses these unresolved issues, the current evidence in these areas, and highlights where current research is attempting to answer some of the outstanding questions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1586/era.10.207DOI Listing
January 2011

Circulating regulatory T cells in endometrial cancer: a role for age and menopausal status.

Immunol Invest 2011 1;40(1):62-75. Epub 2010 Sep 1.

Academic Unit of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, School of Cancer and Enabling Sciences, The University of Manchester, Manchester, United Kingdom.

Regulatory T cells (Treg) are a sub-population of T cells that suppress self-reactivity and are implicated in immune tolerance towards malignant cells. Circulating Treg cells are increased in several cancers. In endometrial cancer Treg cells have been investigated only in tumour tissues and, in contrast to some other tumours, fewer Treg cells were reported in endometrial cancer compared with benign controls. Flow cytometry was used to determine the frequency of circulating Treg cells in women undergoing hysterectomy for either endometrial cancer (n = 24) or non- cancer-related conditions (n = 21). Circulating Treg cells were more abundant in women with cancer compared to those without (4.68% vs. 3.66%, p = 0.05, Mann-Whitney test). This relationship disappeared, however, when only data from post-menopausal women were included in the analysis. Mean Treg cell frequency was 4.65% in postmenopausal women with cancer (n = 23) and 4.73% in postmenopausal controls (n = 5) (p = 0.9). In women without cancer we found that mean Treg cell frequency was higher in postmenopausal women (4.73%, n = 5) in comparison to premenopausal controls (3.33%, n = 16) (p = 0.02). These results suggest that the increased proportion of Treg cells seen in endometrial cancer patients might be, at least in part, attributed to their postmenopausal status or age.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3109/08820139.2010.513022DOI Listing
March 2011

In vitro and in vivo effects of the PPAR-alpha agonists fenofibrate and retinoic acid in endometrial cancer.

Mol Cancer 2006 Mar 28;5:13. Epub 2006 Mar 28.

University Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, The Rosie Hospital, Robinson Way, Cambridge, CB2 2SW, UK.

Unlabelled: Fenofibrate, an agonist of PPAR-alpha, in doses above 25 microM, inhibits proliferation and induces apoptosis in Ishikawa endometrial cancer cells. We show that these effects are potentiated by retinoic acid, an agonist of the retinoid-X-receptor. DNA content analysis shows that G1/S phase progression through the cell cycle is inhibited. Independent Component Analysis of gene microarray experiments demonstrated downregulation of Cyclin D1 (CCND1) and associated changes in cell cycle gene expression. Expression of PPAR-alpha mRNA was reduced by >75% using RNA-interference but this resulted in only minor changes in biological effects. A nude mouse model of endometrial carcinoma was used to investigate the effect of fenofibrate in vivo but failed to show consistent inhibition of tumour growth.

Conclusion: The combination of fenofibrate and retinoic acid is a potent inhibitor of Ishikawa endometrial cancer cell growth in vitro.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1476-4598-5-13DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1475879PMC
March 2006

Radical hysterectomy.

Best Pract Res Clin Obstet Gynaecol 2005 Jun 16;19(3):387-401. Epub 2005 Feb 16.

Department of Gynaecological Oncology, The Cambridge Cancer Centre, Addenbrookes Hospital NHS Trust, Hills Road, Cambridge CB2 2QQ, UK.

The radical hysterectomy is the standard approach for the treatment of women with early cervical cancer. However, it has increasingly been recognized that a more individualized approach to treatment should be taken. In particular, careful pretreatment evaluation should reduce the number of women receiving adjuvant radiotherapy. Laparoscopic lymphadenectomy is an attractive technique that seems likely to reduce the use of dual modality therapy. The laparoscopic approach to the evaluation of lymph nodes in cervical cancer has also allowed the development of the fertility-preserving radical trachelectomy. Outcomes for women with early cervical cancer are generally good, and it therefore becomes increasingly relevant to develop methods of reducing long-term morbidity.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bpobgyn.2004.12.003DOI Listing
June 2005

Transcriptome analysis of endometrial cancer identifies peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors as potential therapeutic targets.

Mol Cancer Ther 2004 Aug;3(8):993-1001

Department of Pathology, University of Cambridge, The Rosie Hospital, Box 223, Level 2, Robinson Way, Cambridge CB2 2SW, United Kingdom.

Endometrial cancer is the most common gynecologic malignancy, frequently arising in association with obesity and diabetes mellitus. To identify gene pathways contributing to endometrial cancer development, we studied the transcriptome of 20 endometrial cancers and 11 benign endometrial tissues using cDNA microarrays. Among the transcript changes identified in endometrial cancer were up-regulation of the nuclear hormone receptors peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPAR) alpha and gamma, whereas retinoid X receptor beta was down-regulated. To clarify the contribution of PPARalpha to endometrial carcinogenesis, we did experiments on cultured endometrial carcinoma cells expressing this transcript. Treatment with fenofibrate, an activating ligand for PPARalpha, significantly reduced proliferation and increased cell death, suggesting that altered expression of nuclear hormone receptors involved with fatty acid metabolism leads to deregulated cellular proliferation and apoptosis. These results support further investigation of members of the PPAR/retinoid X receptor pathway as novel therapeutic targets in endometrial cancer.
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August 2004

Independent component analysis of microarray data in the study of endometrial cancer.

Oncogene 2004 Aug;23(39):6677-83

Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Cambridge, Cambridge CB2 2SW, UK.

Gene microarray technology is highly effective in screening for differential gene expression and has hence become a popular tool in the molecular investigation of cancer. When applied to tumours, molecular characteristics may be correlated with clinical features such as response to chemotherapy. Exploitation of the huge amount of data generated by microarrays is difficult, however, and constitutes a major challenge in the advancement of this methodology. Independent component analysis (ICA), a modern statistical method, allows us to better understand data in such complex and noisy measurement environments. The technique has the potential to significantly increase the quality of the resulting data and improve the biological validity of subsequent analysis. We performed microarray experiments on 31 postmenopausal endometrial biopsies, comprising 11 benign and 20 malignant samples. We compared ICA to the established methods of principal component analysis (PCA), Cyber-T, and SAM. We show that ICA generated patterns that clearly characterized the malignant samples studied, in contrast to PCA. Moreover, ICA improved the biological validity of the genes identified as differentially expressed in endometrial carcinoma, compared to those found by Cyber-T and SAM. In particular, several genes involved in lipid metabolism that are differentially expressed in endometrial carcinoma were only found using this method. This report highlights the potential of ICA in the analysis of microarray data.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/sj.onc.1207562DOI Listing
August 2004

Expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-D and its receptor, VEGF receptor 3, as a prognostic factor in endometrial carcinoma.

Clin Cancer Res 2003 Apr;9(4):1361-9

Reproductive Molecular Research Group, Department of Pathology, University of Cambridge, Cambridge CB2 1QP, United Kingdom.

Purpose: To evaluate the prognostic value of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-D and VEGF receptor (VEGFR)-3 in endometrial carcinoma.

Experimental Design: We assessed the levels of immunoreactivity for VEGF-D and VEGFR-3 in 71 endometrial carcinomas, 14 complex atypical endometrial hyperplasias, and 16 normal endometria by immunohistochemistry.

Results: VEGF-D was stained in both tumor cells and adjacent stromal cells. VEGFR-3 was stained in both tumor cells and adjacent endothelial cells. Immunoreactivity for VEGF-D in tumor cells and adjacent stromal cells became significantly stronger as lesions progressed from normal endometrium to advanced carcinoma. Similarly, immunoreactivity for VEGFR-3 in tumor cells and adjacent endothelial cells was significantly greater as lesions progressed from normal endometrium to advanced carcinoma. A strong correlation was found between high levels of VEGF-D immunoreactivity in carcinoma cells and VEGFR-3 in both carcinoma cells and adjacent endothelial cells. Similarly, high levels of VEGF-D immunoreactivity in stromal cells were significantly correlated with those of VEGFR-3 in both carcinoma cells and endothelial cells. High levels of VEGF-D in carcinoma cells and stromal cells, as well as those of VEGFR-3 in carcinoma cells and endothelial cells, were significantly related to myometrial invasion and lymph node metastasis. A strong correlation was found between poor survival and high levels of VEGF-D in both carcinoma cells and stromal cells and between poor survival and high levels of VEGFR-3 in carcinoma cells. Moreover, the high levels of VEGF-D in stromal cells and VEGFR-3 in carcinoma cells were independent prognostic factors in endometrial carcinoma.

Conclusions: The presence of VEGF-D and VEGFR-3 in endometrial carcinoma may predict myometrial invasion and lymph node metastasis and may prospectively identify patients who are at increased risk for poor outcome. In addition, VEGF-D and VEGFR-3 may be promising targets for new therapeutic strategies in endometrial carcinoma.
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April 2003
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