Purpose: Serum levels of angiogenic cytokines decrease after radiotherapy in patients with cancer, and this may be relevant for treatment response and progression-free survival. Herein, we set out to determine whether circulating fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) and platelet-derived growth factor-beta (PDGF-beta) decrease after radiotherapy in patients with non-Hodgkin lymphomas (NHLs) and if so, whether their decrease correlates with age, tumour histotype and stage, and radiation dose.
Material and methods: The serum levels of FGF-2, VEGF, HGF and PDGF-beta were evaluated before and after radiotherapy by an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). These levels were correlated both reciprocally and with age, histotype, stage and radiation dose.
Results: After radiotherapy, FGF-2, VEGF and PDGF-beta, but not HGF, significantly decreased in relation to the radiation dose and response. No correlation was established between cytokine levels, except for VEGF and PDGF-beta, which decreased in parallel. Haemoglobin levels did not decrease after radiotherapy, while FGF-2, VEGF, HGF and PDGF-beta levels did not correlate with age, NHL stage and histotype.
Conclusions: Soluble FGF-2, VEGF and PDGF-beta levels decline after radiotherapy in NHLs, and may have predictive significance for response to treatment and recurrence.