Methods of Analyzing Pathways of Colorectal Cancer in Middle East May Be Ineffective

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A majority of Middle Eastern colorectal cancer (CRC) cases was designated as part of the unassigned group, suggesting methods of analyzing molecular pathways may not apply to this ethnic group, according to an article published online in the journal Cancer.

A total of 770 CRC cases were evaluated using molecular characterization for microsatellite instability, BRAF, and KRAS by polymerase chain reaction, and another 500 cases were examined for CpG island methylator phenotype (CIMP) high phenotype.

Results showed 33.4% of CRC cases were comprised of the traditional pathway, 11.6% were the alternate pathway, and 0.8% of CRC cases in the Middle East were characterized as the serrated molecular pathway. The remaining 54.2% of CRC cases were not characterized according to any of the three molecular pathways, and, therefore, they were categorized as the unassigned group.

Furthermore, the molecular pathways were determined to be significantly associated with both tumor site and grade.

A significant survival difference (P=0.0079) was observed in a subset of cases with an unassigned molecular pathway.

The study’s findings suggest that more research is needed regarding the molecular genetic basis of CRC in order to characterize cases of the disease. 

Cancer of Unknown Origin: A Diagnostic and Treatment Dilemma
A majority of Middle Eastern colorectal cancer cases was designated as part of the unassigned group.
Beg, S., Siraj, A. K., Prabhakaran, S., Bu, R., Al-Rasheed, M., Sultana, M., Qadri, Z., Al-Assiri, M., Sairafi, R., Al-Dayel, F., Al-Sanea, N., Uddin, S. and Al-Kuraya, K. S. (2015), Molecular markers and pathway analysis of colorectal carcinoma in the Middle East. Cancer. doi: 10.1002/cncr.29580
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