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International Journal of Otolaryngology
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 848021, 6 pages
Clinical Study

Prevalence of K-RAS Codons 12 and 13 Mutations in Locally Advanced Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma and Impact on Clinical Outcomes

1Department of Head and Neck Surgery, Centre Hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal (CHUM), Montreal, QC, Canada
2Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology, CHUM, Montreal, QC, Canada
3Department of Radiation Oncology, CHUM, Montreal, QC, Canada

Received 4 January 2013; Revised 22 March 2013; Accepted 27 March 2013

Academic Editor: David W. Eisele

Copyright © 2013 Eric Bissada et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. RAS gene mutations have an impact on treatment response and overall prognosis for certain types of cancer. Objectives. To determine the prevalence and impact of K-RAS codons 12 and 13 mutations in patients with locally advanced HNSCC treated with primary or adjuvant chemo-radiation. Methods. 428 consecutive patients were treated with chemo-radiation therapy and followed for a median of 37 months. From these, 199 paraffin embedded biopsy or surgical specimens were retrieved. DNA was isolated and analyzed for K-RAS mutational status. Results. DNA extraction was successful in 197 samples. Of the 197 specimens, 3.5% presented K-RAS codon 12 mutations. For mutated cases and non-mutated cases, complete initial response to chemoradiation therapy was 71 and 73% ( ). LRC was respectively 32 and 83% ( ), DFS was 27 and 68% ( ), distant metastasis-free survival was 100 and 81% ( ) and OS was 57 and 65% ( ) at three years. K-Ras codon 13 analysis revealed no mutation. Conclusion. K-RAS codon 12 mutational status, although not associated with a difference in response rate, may influence the failure pattern and the type of therapy offered to patients with HNSCC. Our study did not reveal any mutation of K-RAS codon 13.