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Young patients with metastatic colorectal cancer are at high risk of disease progression and death
Date:9/27/2013

thought to play a role. We carried out this study to see whether age was associated with time until cancer progresses or the patient dies. We also wanted to get a better picture of the age-response relationship and identify how risk changes as people age, rather than simply comparing one group (patients younger than 40) with another group (patients older than 40)."

Previous studies in this field have split the population into two mutually exclusive groups, establishing rigid limits between those patients younger than 40 or 50 and those older than that age. The new research, however, did not use such a cut-off approach and it includes data spanning all ages. "The reason why we did this is because we believe that a 49-year-old patient with colorectal cancer may be different than a 20-year-old. By including them in the same group of people younger than 50 years old we might be mistakenly considering them to be the same," Dr Lieu will explain.

Dr Lieu and his colleagues analysed information from a database of clinical trials in advanced colorectal cancer supported by the French "Aide et Recherche en Cancrologie Digestive" Foundation (ARCAD), which includes the 20,034 patients from 24 phase III clinical trials who were on their first treatment for the disease, plus additional patient data from other trials in which patients might be on second or third lines of different treatments, having not responded to their initial therapy.

Out of these patients, 20,011 were evaluable for analysis of survival time and time until the disease progressed. Dr Lieu will say: "Analysis of this incredibly large population of patients has allowed us to answer meaningful questions, such as the outcomes of young versus older patients. Our results show that young age is associated with worse overall survival and progression-free survival. Young patients with metastatic colorectal cancer represent a group who are at high risk for treatment failure."

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Contact: José Abad
ecco2013press@gmail.com
ECCO-the European CanCer Organisation
Source:Eurekalert

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