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01.12.2019 | Research article | Ausgabe 1/2019 Open Access

BMC Pulmonary Medicine 1/2019

Circulating tumor cells prior to initial treatment is an important prognostic factor of survival in non-small cell lung cancer: a meta-analysis and system review

BMC Pulmonary Medicine > Ausgabe 1/2019
Sha-Sha Jiang, Bo Deng, Yong-Geng Feng, Kai Qian, Qun-You Tan, Ru-Wen Wang
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Our study aimed to verify the prognostic value of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) prior to initial treatment on survival of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) by using meta-analysis and system review of published studies.

Materials and methods

The PubMed, EMBASE and Cochrane Library were searched, respectively, to identify all studies that addressed the issues of CTCs prior to initial treatment and progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS). Finally, ten citations were included for analysis and assessment of publication bias by using review manager 5.3 statistical software and STATA 15.0.


Randomized model analyzing multivariate Cox Proportional Hazards Regression indicated that higher abundance of CTCs significantly predicts poorer prognosis of lung cancer cases basing both on PFS (Z = 2.31, P = 0.02) and OS of advanced cases (Z = 2.44, P = 0.01), and systematic study aslo indicated the similar results.


High CTCs prior to initial treatment can predict shorter PFS and OS in NSCLC, and further studies are warranted in the future.
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