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The study aimed to determine the effects of cytostatic and genotoxic drugs used to treat breast cancer on sister chromatid exchange (SCE). SCE values were examined in 25 female patients with breast cancer in pre-treatment, treatment process and remission period as well as in 22 nonsmoker women via peripheral blood culture technique. The SCE values of patient and control group were analyzed via "Mann-Whitney U test". Whilst SCE values of patient group ​​were 8.25 ± 3.67, 10.19 ± 2.95 and 11.52 ± 3.33 in pre-treatment, treatment process and remission periods respectively, it was 7.01 ± 1.24 in control group. When overall SCE values of patients group in pre-treatment period were compared with those of control group, no significant difference was observed (p > 0.05), whereas highly significant differences were observed between treatment process and remission period of patient groups and control group in terms of SCE values (p < 0.01). If patients are exposed to any cytostatic and clastogenic drugs, the increase in the exchange values was considered remarkable. These findings reinforced the availability of sister chromatid exchange technique in directing of treatment and monitoring the genetic abnormalities caused by genomic instability which may occur due to the drugs used for treatment.


Akin Tekcan, Mehmet Elbistan, Ali Naki Ulusoy. Sister chromatid exchanges in breast cancer patients who underwent chemotherapy. The Journal of toxicological sciences. 2012;37(2):235-43

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PMID: 22467013

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