Microsatellite analyses of recurrence or second primary tumor in head and neck cancer

D. Ronchetti, E. Arisi, A. Neri, G. Pruneri, B. Digiuni, G. Sambataro, O. Gallo, Lorenzo Pignataro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: In head and neck squamous cell carcinoma, distinguishing second primary tumours and recurrences may help to orient clinical decisions concerning therapy. Patients and Methods: A panel of eight microsatellite markers was used to analyse the loss of heterozygosity and genomic instability in a selected group of 32 patients experiencing a recurrence after having undergone surgery for oral or oropharyngeal carcinoma, in order to establish the clonality and origin of the recurrence. Results: Twenty-three patients showed genetic changes in primary and/or relapsing tumour DNA: clonally-related patterns were detected in six cases, whereas the different patterns between paired tumours indicated the presence of a second primary tumour in 17 cases. None of the markers was informative in nine cases. Conclusion: Our observations suggest that only a small proportion of patients have primary and secondary tumours developing from a single contiguous altered field (thus indicating a common clonal origin), whereas the metachronous tumour arises in unrelated fields in the majority of cases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2771-2776
Number of pages6
JournalAnticancer Research
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2005


  • Head and neck cancer
  • Microsatellite analyses
  • Recurrence
  • Second primary tumours

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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