In recent years, the number of cancer patients has increased. Cancer patients are prone to sarcopenia as a result of the decrease in muscle mass and muscle weakness which occurs in cancer cachexia. Attention has been given on the effects of fatty acid administration on cancer patients.
We conducted a retrospective chart-review study of consecutive patients with unresectable advanced GI cancer (stage IV) (n=46) receiving chemotherapy treatment in an outpatient or in-hospital setting between December 2012 and September 2015 at our Institution. The collected data were characteristics, psoas muscle area as measured by computed tomography (CT), and biochemical blood test and serum fatty acid profiles. Three methods of analysis were evaluated: (i) Comparison of biomarkers between two groups: psoas muscle index change rate (ΔPMI) decrease group vs. ΔPMI increase group. (ii) Correlation between ΔPMI and biomarkers. (iii) Multiple regression of ΔPMI and biomarkers Results: In the ΔPMI decrease group, n-6/n-3 ratio and AA/EPA ratio in the decrease group were significantly higher than those in the increase group. Among all parameters, serum EPA was positively and significantly related to ΔPMI (CC=0.443, p=0.039). In contrast, serum CRP, AA/EPA ratio and n-6/n-3 ratio were negatively related to ΔPMI (CC=-0.566, CC=-0.501, CC=-0.476, p=0.006, p=0.018, p=0.025, respectively). On multiple regression analysis, serum CRP value was strongly related to ΔPMI (r2=0.421, β=-0.670, p=0.001).
Higher n-6/n-3 and AA/EPA ratios were associated with a decrease in psoas muscle area, that lead to diagnosis of sarcopenia. Higher CRP was also associated with a decrease in psoas muscle area, suggesting that this might be an indicator of cachexicskeletal muscle depletion in cachexic patients with advanced gastro-intestinal cancers.

PMID: 28882973

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