Angiogenesis represents a key event in cancer development, leading to local invasion e metastatization, and might be considered a basic feature in gastroenteropancreatic neuroendocrine neoplasms (GEP-NENs) with a high expression of angiogenic molecules. We aimed to analyze the prognostic and predictive role of angiogenic factors in GEP-NENs through the analysis of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of VEGF-A, VEGFR2 and VEGFR3. The genomic DNA of 58 consecutive patients with GEP-NENs treated at our Institution was extracted from peripheral blood. Two SNPs were identified respectively in VEGFA (rs2010963G>C, rs699947A>C), VEGFR-2 (rs2305948C>T, rs1870377T>A), and VEGFR-3 (rs307821T>C, rs307826C>A) gene. Gene polymorphisms were determined by Real-Time PCR using TaqMan assays. Median age was 57 years (range 24–79 years); 32 patients were male and 77.5% of NENs were localized in the pancreas. The allele frequency of VEGFR-2 rs2305948T and of VEGF-A rs2010963C showed a trend of higher frequency than in general population (12.1% vs. 8.0% and 34.5% vs. 31.2%, respectively). Three out SNPs (VEGF-A rs699947C, VEGF-A rs2010963GC and VEGFR-3 rs307821C) showed a correlation with an increased risk of disease relapse. Moreover median PFS changes according to the presence of 0–1 SNPs (20.7% of cases; 61.9 months), 2 SNPs (25.9%; 49.2 months) and 3 SNPs (53.4%; 27.8 months) (p = 0.034). Results suggest, for the first time, that specific SNPs in VEGF-A and VEGFR-3 correlate with poor prognosis in GEP-NENs. The identification of this new prognostic factor might be helpful in order to optimize the management of these heterogeneous neoplasms. © 2018 Berardi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Berardi, R., Torniai, M., Partelli, S., Rubini, C., Pagliaretta, S., Savini, A., Polenta, V., Santoni, M., Giampieri, R., Onorati, S., Barucca, F., Murrone, A., Bianchi, F., & Falconi, M. (2018). Impact of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and vascular endothelial growth factor receptor (VEGFR) single nucleotide polymorphisms on outcome in gastroenteropancreatic neuroendocrine neoplasms. PLoS One, 13(5), e0197035. [e0197035]. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0197035