"Cell free" DNA (cfDNA) plasma levels have been shown to derive from necrotic cancer cells and circulate in patients' plasma in different types of cancers. It has been suggested that cfDNA levels may be used as biomarkers for early detection as well as prognostication.
To explore the association between cfDNA plasma levels and survival in patients with oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC).
Plasma samples from newly diagnosed patients with OSCC, treated at a university-affiliated tertiary care center were obtained from the institutional tissue biobank. cfDNA was extracted from the plasma samples and quantified. The correlation between cfDNA levels and survival was analyzed.
Plasma samples from 30 patients with OSCC were included in the study. Patients whose plasma cfDNA levels were above 0.3 ng/ul had a significantly worse disease specific survival (DSS) and overall survival (OS) rates compared to the lower cfDNA plasma levels group (p=0.015). Furthermore, we found a correlation between cfDNA levels and tumor size.
The findings of the present study suggest that cfDNA plasma levels may be an important prognostic factor in patients with newly diagnosed OSCC.
Comparison of lesion size and T stage to cfDNA concentration: