The purpose of this study was to combine gene expression profiles and clinical factors to provide a better prediction model of local control after chemoradiotherapy for advanced head and neck cancer.

Gene expression data were available for a series of 92 advanced stage head and neck cancer patients treated with primary chemoradiotherapy. The effect of the Chung high-risk and Slebos HPV expression profiles on local control was analyzed in a model with age at diagnosis, gender, tumor site, tumor volume, T-stage and N-stage and HPV profile status.

Among 75 patients included in the study, the only factors significantly predicting local control were tumor site (oral cavity vs. pharynx, hazard ratio 4.2 [95% CI 1.4-12.5]), Chung gene expression status (high vs. low risk profile, hazard ratio 4.4 [95% CI 1.5-13.3]) and HPV profile (negative vs. positive profile, hazard ratio 6.2 [95% CI 1.7-22.5]).

Chung high-risk expression profile and a negative HPV expression profile were significantly associated with increased risk of local recurrence after chemoradiotherapy in advanced pharynx and oral cavity tumors, independent of clinical factors.