Searching for Prognostic Markers in Patients with Osteosarcoma


To extend the quality of life for patients with osteosarcoma, researchers are looking for ways to identify before chemo whether or not they need that treatment.

In an interview with OncLive®, a sister publication to Oncology Nursing News®, Elham Nasri, MD, resident, and pathologist at the University of Florida’s College of Medicine, discussed the procedures oncology professionals should take before determining whether patients with osteosarcoma should begin chemotherapy.


What they do is, they usually biopsy a patient's tumor and the tumor comes to us as a pathologist. We diagnose it to see if it is osteosarcoma or not, if the physicians and especially the oncologists are aware that they can use a specific markers at a time of diagnosis to help them to gauge the treatment of the patients because they will have started the chemo already, it will be helpful.

So, they can ask us to do it, because it's not a routine or a standard thing to do nowadays, and it's still a method under investigation, but what we do is that they perform immunohistochemistry on the piece of tissue that they gave us. Based on our evaluation of the percentage of the cells in that slide of tissue that express that marker, we can give them if this tumor is a high expression for P16 or P21 or not.

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