Salivary Secretor Status of Blood Group Antigens in Patients with Head and Neck Cancer
BACKGROUND: Head and neck cancers include malignancies of the scalp and neck skin, nasal cavity, paranasal sinuses, oral cavity, salivary glands, pharynx and larynx. The term ABO secretor refers to people who secrete blood group antigens in their body fluids such as saliva, sweat, tears, semen, and serum. Non-secretors refer to those who do not secrete their blood group antigens in their body fluids. The lack of blood type antigens in body discharge increases the susceptibility to certain types of diseases and infection.
AIM: Our study aimed to investigate the relationship between the secretion of blood groups in the saliva of patients with head and neck cancers.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: This case-control study was performed on 110 people (57 patients with head and neck cancer who were referred to Imam Khomeini Hospital, Tehran and 53 cancer-free controls). Five ml of non-stimulated saliva were collected by the spitting method. By agglutination or lack of agglutination in the test tubes, we determined the patientâ€™s secretor or non-secretor condition.
RESULTS: In terms of secretor status, 52.7% of all samples were secretors. In the case group, 19 out of 57 cases (33.3%) were secretors, and 38 were non-secretors (66.7%). In the control group, 39 out of 53 cases (73.6%) were secretors, and 14 cases were non-secretors (26.4%). There was a significant difference in the percentage of non-secretors between the two groups (p = 0.00).
CONCLUSION: People with non-secretor status may be more prone to develop head and neck cancer. The presence of these antigens in saliva may have a protective effect.
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