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Pancreatic cancer as a model: inflammatory mediators, acute-phase response, and cancer cachexia

Fearon, K.C.H., Barber, M.D., Falconer, J.S., McMillan, D.C., Ross, J.A., and Preston, T. (1999) Pancreatic cancer as a model: inflammatory mediators, acute-phase response, and cancer cachexia. World Journal of Surgery, 23 (6). pp. 584-588. ISSN 0364-2313 (doi:10.1007/PL00012351)

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Abstract

Patients with pancreatic cancer frequently develop the syndrome of cancer cachexia. Pro-inflammatory cytokines have been strongly implicated in the pathogenesis of this syndrome. In patients with pancreatic cancer an acute-phase response (an index of pro-inflammatory cytokine activity) is associated with accelerated weight loss, hypermetabolism, anorexia, and a shortened duration of survival. However, little is known about the primary significance of the acute-phase response in terms of altered hepatic export protein synthesis rates and its potential impact on the body's nitrogen economy. In a recent series of studies on weight-losing pancreatic cancer patients with hypoalbuminemia we have demonstrated albumin synthesis to be unaltered whereas fibrinogen synthesis is increased two- to threefold compared with healthy controls. Because of the mismatch in amino acid composition between the body's main labile amino acid reserve (skeletal muscle) and that of acute-phase proteins, these results lend support to the concept that in pancreatic cancer the reprioritization of body protein metabolism during an acute-phase response may well be a significant factor in the loss of lean tissue in these patients.

Item Type:Article
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s):Preston, Prof Thomas
Authors: Fearon, K.C.H., Barber, M.D., Falconer, J.S., McMillan, D.C., Ross, J.A., and Preston, T.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre
Journal Name:World Journal of Surgery
ISSN:0364-2313
ISSN (Online):1432-2323

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