BioScience Trends. 2010;4(3):103-109.

DNA content can improve the detection and prognosis of carcinoma of the cervix.

Chhavi, Saxena M, Negi MP, Singh S, Singh PK, Singh U, Bhatt MLB


In all malignant diseases, several clinical and histopathological tests are established as standard methods for diagnosis. Alternative diagnostic quantitative methods are still lacking or conflicting in cancer of the cervix. Although DNA analysis was one of the earliest applications in flow cytometry and the DNA content of fresh/frozen tissue have shown good prognostic results in many diseases including cervical cancer, prognostic ability cannot be easily clarified quantitatively by biochemical values. Thus, our objective was to determine whether the addition of a DNA content study using flow cytometry improves the detection of cervix cancer. The quantification of DNA content was done by high resolution DNA flow cytometry in fresh/frozen tissues of healthy cervix (control, n = 38) and from cancer of the cervix (n = 62). Results show that the mean fraction of Total S phase, Total Aneuploid and G2-M (Diploid) are significantly higher (p < 0.01); while G0-G1 (Diploid) and G0-G1 (Aneuploid) are significantly lower (p < 0.01) in cancer patients as compared to control. Among cell cycle parameters, G0-G1 (Diploid) shows a classifying ability of 97% and at a criterion/threshold value of ≤ 79.88, it discriminates cases with the highest sensitivity of 96.77 (88.8-99.5; 95% CI) and specificity 100.0 (90.7-100.0; 95% CI) and with Total S phase or Aneuploid, it discriminates cases with 100% sensitivity. G0-G1 (Diploid) also showed a direct and significant correlation (r = 0.66; p < 0.01) with patient survival indicating prognostic significance. Cell cycle parameters will be very helpful in false positive results or where the clinician is unable to diagnose the stage of cervix cancer clinically or histopathologically.

KEYWORDS: DNA content, G0-G1 (Diploid), G0-G1 (Aneuploid), Total S phase, flow cytometry

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