West, Catharine M L
Slevin, Nicholas J
Davidson, Susan E
James, Roger D
AffiliationDepartment of Oncology, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Gothenburg, Sweden.
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AbstractA study was made of the intrinsic radiosensitivity of 140 biopsy and surgical specimens of malignant head and neck tumours of different histologies. Using a soft-agar clonogenic assay, the material was assessed for the ability to grow in culture (colony-forming efficiency; CFE) and inherent tumour radiosensitivity (surviving fraction at 2 Gy, SF2). The success rate for obtaining growth was 74% (104/140) with a mean CFE of 0.093% (median 0.031) and a range of 0.002-1.3%. SF2 was obtained for 88 of 140 specimens, representing a success rate of 63% with a mean SF2 of 0.48 (median 0.43) and a range of 0.10-1.00. There were no significant differences in radiosensitivity between different sites of the head and neck region. There were no significant relationships between SF2 and disease stage, nodal status, tumour grade, patient age, primary tumour growth pattern and CFE. The results were compared with those for other tumour types previously analysed with the same assay. The distribution of the SF2 values for the head and neck tumours was similar to that for 145 cervix carcinomas and there was no significant difference in mean radiosensitivity between the two tumour types. Also, there was no significant difference in radiosensitivity between head and neck tumours and either breast or colorectal cancers. However, a group of eight lymphomas was significantly more radiosensitive. These results confirm the feasibility of carrying out radiosensitivity measurements using a soft-agar clonogenic assay on head and neck tumours. In addition, the work has shown that radiosensitivity is independent of many clinical parameters and that the mean value is similar to that reported for cervix carcinomas.
CitationThe in vitro radiosensitivity of human head and neck cancers. 1998, 77 (12):2371-5 Br. J. Cancer
JournalBritish Journal of Cancer
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