Last updated on January 2019

Circulating Tumor DNA in Predicting Outcomes in Patients With Stage IV Head and Neck Cancer or Stage III-IV Non-small Cell Lung Cancer

Brief description of study

This pilot research trial studies circulating tumor deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) in predicting outcomes in patients with stage IV head and neck cancer or stage III-IV non-small cell lung cancer. Studying circulating tumor DNA from patients with head and neck or lung cancer in the laboratory may help doctors predict how well patients will respond to treatment.

Detailed Study Description


I. To evaluate the predictive value of the circulating tumor DNA for disease-free survival/progression-free survival in patients with advanced head and neck carcinoma (HNC) and non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).


I. To correlate the levels of plasma tumor DNA with the salivary tumor DNA. II. To correlate the mutations found in the circulating tumor DNA with the mutations in the tumor tissues.

III. To evaluate the association between presence and absence of circulating tumor DNA mutation with the tumor burden assessed by using the radiological findings and pre-treatment fludeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET)-derived metrics: metabolic tumor volume (MTV), maximum standardized uptake value (SUVmax), total glycolytic activity (TGA).

IV. To quantify tumor-specific exosomes from plasma. V. To evaluate the utility of cancer-derived exosomes to serve as prognostic biomarkers for real-time monitoring of therapeutic efficacy and identifying early recurrence using longitudinal samples from cancer patients undergoing treatment.


Patients undergo blood sample collection within 1 month before surgery, radiation therapy, or chemotherapy; within 1 week after surgical resection (for patients having upfront surgery); within 1 month before beginning of post-operative radiation therapy (for patients having upfront surgery); during the second week of radiation therapy, during the last week of radiation therapy; and at 1 and 3 months after radiation therapy and then every 3 months for up to 18 months. Patients also undergo saliva sample collection within 1 month before surgery, radiation therapy, chemoradiation therapy, or system chemotherapy and tissue collection at the time of surgery (if upfront surgery is indicated). Blood, saliva, and tissue samples are analyzed for tumor mutations via next generation sequencing.

Clinical Study Identifier: NCT02245100

Contact Investigators or Research Sites near you

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Voichita Bar-Ad, MD

Thomas Jefferson University
Philadelphia, PA United States
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Recruitment Status: Open

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