UMCU presents association of muscle loss during systemic cancer treatment with patient survival

During the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO ), Sophie Kurk from the University Medical Centre Utrecht (UMCU) showed the latest findings of a retrospective study of the CAIRO3* trial during a poster presentation.

Sophie Kurk: “What we really show here, is the detrimental effect of muscle loss. Cancer patients in the trial with a lower score on the skeletal muscle index (SMI) show earlier tumor progression following their treatment than patients who don’t suffer from muscle loss. Muscle loss is related to lower survival chances.”

This study is part of the Utrecht Centre on Food & Health. UMCU, Utrecht University and Danone Nutricia Research are partners in this collaboration.

The poster presentation covered results on muscle loss in relation to time to progression and survival of metastatic colorectal cancer patients receiving palliative systemic treatment. The main finding is that metastatic colorectal cancer patients, who lose skeletal muscle following systemic treatment (CAPOX-B), show a decreased prognosis as indicated by shorter overall survival. Based on these latest findings, this study suggests that SMI preservation may be a future therapeutic goal.  The use of medical nutrition to help preserve SMI is an important area of future study.

OncologieTV and poster download
An OncologieTV interview (in Dutch and after free registration) featuring Sophie Kurk at ASCO can be watched here. The related poster “Impact of skeletal muscle index (SMI) loss during palliative systematic treatment (Tx) on time to progression and overall survival (OS) in metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) patients” can be downloaded here.

About ASCO
The annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology was held 2 to 6 June in Chicago. The Annual Meeting brings together more than 30,000 oncology professionals from around the world to discuss state-of-the-art treatment modalities, new therapies, and ongoing controversies in the field.

*Simkens et al. Lancet 2015