Cancer chemotherapy and pharmacology

Association of right-sided tumors with high thymidine phosphorylase gene expression levels and the response to oral uracil and tegafur/leucovorin chemotherapy among patients with colorectal cancer.

PMID 22752215


To identify useful predictive factors for the response to 5-fluorouracil (5-FU)/leucovorin (LV) and oral uracil and tegafur (UFT)/LV chemotherapy among patients with colorectal cancer, we investigated the association between the gene expression levels of pyrimidine and folate metabolism-related enzymes in colorectal cancer (CRC) tissues and the response to UFT/LV neoadjuvant chemotherapy. The subjects were 76 CRC patients who were scheduled to undergo surgery. UFT (300 mg/m(2)/day) and LV (75 mg/body/day) were administered for 2 weeks before surgery. Biopsy samples were endoscopically obtained before drug administration. The gene expression levels of 14 genes in the biopsy samples were quantitatively evaluated using a real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assay. Fifteen patients (19.7 %) with marked pathological regression were judged to be responders. Thymidine phosphorylase (TP) gene expression levels among the responders were significantly higher than those among the non-responders. Right-sided tumors with high TP gene expression levels were associated with a significantly higher response rate to UFT/LV chemotherapy than left-sided tumors. TP gene expression levels in primary CRC tissues and the primary tumor site may be useful predictors of the efficacy of oral UFT/LV chemotherapy.