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The VAR2CSA malaria protein efficiently retrieves circulating tumor cells in an EpCAM-independent manner

Agerbæk, MØ; Bang-Christensen, SR; Yang, M-H; Clausen, TM; Pereira, MA; Sharma, S; Ditlev, SB; ... Salanti, A; + view all (2018) The VAR2CSA malaria protein efficiently retrieves circulating tumor cells in an EpCAM-independent manner. Nature Communications , 9 (1) , Article 3279. 10.1038/s41467-018-05793-2. Green open access

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Abstract

Isolation of metastatic circulating tumor cells (CTCs) from cancer patients is of high value for disease monitoring and molecular characterization. Despite the development of many new CTC isolation platforms in the last decade, their isolation and detection has remained a challenge due to the lack of specific and sensitive markers. In this feasibility study, we present a method for CTC isolation based on the specific binding of the malaria rVAR2 protein to oncofetal chondroitin sulfate (ofCS). We show that rVAR2 efficiently captures CTCs from hepatic, lung, pancreatic, and prostate carcinoma patients with minimal contamination of peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Expression of ofCS is present on epithelial and mesenchymal cancer cells and is equally preserved during epithelial-mesenchymal transition of cancer cells. In 25 stage I-IV prostate cancer patient samples, CTC enumeration significantly correlates with disease stage. Lastly, rVAR2 targets a larger and more diverse population of CTCs compared to anti-EpCAM strategies.

Type: Article
Title: The VAR2CSA malaria protein efficiently retrieves circulating tumor cells in an EpCAM-independent manner
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/s41467-018-05793-2
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-018-05793-2
Language: English
Additional information: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Cancer Institute
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Cancer Institute > Research Department of Oncology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10054678
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