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AACR 2024 | Important pathophysiological determinants of elevated cirDNA post-surgery

Alain Thierry, PhD, INSERM U896 – IRCM, Montpellier, France, provides an insightful summary of his investigation of post-surgery sequelae, unrelated to disease progression and chemotherapy toxicity, in patients with colon cancer. Unexpectedly, circulating DNA (cirDNA) levels were elevated in patients, despite tumor resection and irrespective of a history with chemotherapeutic intervention. Given that cirDNA elevation has been associated with the formation of neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs), NET markers were monitored post-surgery. Crucially, NET formation was found to contribute to post-surgery conditions. Further the presence of persistent, elevated cirDNA levels post-surgery was highly associated with NET formation. Offering an explanation for this phenomena, Prof. Thierry suggests that dysregulated NETosis results in a persistent elevation of NETs and cirDNA, noting that these levels vary with post-surgery thrombotic events. This interview took place at the 2024 American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) in San Diego, CA.

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