On this page you can find a summary of some of the other types of cancer for which maintrac® can be applied:

Tumors of unknown origin:

In approximately 4% of patients, a cancer diagnosis is made on the basis of metastases. If doctors cannot ascertain the organ of origin of the primary tumor, even after extensive examinations, then it is referred to as a "Cancer with Unknown Primary Tumor" or "Cancer of Unknown Primary" (CUP). Prognosis and therapy are different for each patient with CUP, depending on the actual original type of cancer.
By identifying specific cell surface characteristics, in some cases maintrac® can help to identify the original tumor.

Renal cell cancer / Renal cell carcinoma:

Renal cell cancer, a malignant tumor of the kidney, makes up around 3 % of all tumor diseases. Risk factors include chronic renal insufficiency, increased age, smoking and ingestion of analgesics over a long period of time. After partial or complete removal of the kidney, the treatment plan involves the use of cytostatic drugs. In the past few years, new drugs for the treatment of metastatic renal cell cancers have been approved. In the case of treatment, maintrac® can be used to determine characteristics of the circulating tumor cells which are relevant for a therapy with these substances.


Sarcoma describes malignant tumors of connective tissue, soft tissues or bones. These tumors are quite rare. The earlier a sarcoma diagnosis is made, the greater are the chances of successful treatment. Sarcomas are normally treated using a mixture of surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy. If cancer has already metastasized or can be found in surrounding lymph nodes it makes the prognosis less favorable. In the case of sarcomas, often only some of the tumor cells carry the cell-surface properties which the maintrac® analysis can determine. As such, maintrac® can make in cases of these tumors a contribution by monitoring therapy.


Glioblastomas are malignant brain tumors. These tumors occur primarily in adults between the ages of 45 and 70, but can also occur in children. Their size usually increases rapidly. Their size usually increases rapidly. Although these tumors tend to form metastases within the brain itself, the blood-brain barrier is often affected and cells can make their way into the bloodstream. It can be assumed that these cells in the blood will have the same properties as the cells in the brain. maintrac® can determine the number of these cells, identify their characteristics, and thus help in therapy decisions.

To find out exactly what maintrac® is, and how the method can be useful prior to, during, and after treatment for monitoring of progress and creating more effective treatments, click here.

Generally, the maintrac® method can be used for almost all solid tumor types. For any questions in this regard, please contact the Specialized Medical Laboratoy Dr. Pachmann [+49 (0) 921 850 200 ].

Tumors of unknown origin:

An indication where the primary tumor is localized can be drawn from the determination of tumor markers or the characterization of CETCs. This approach is beneficial, especially if there is no potential biopsy material left. In this way, evidence of Melan A can help to classify melanoma cells, for example.

Renal cell cancer / Renal cell carcinoma

maintrac® allows for detection and quantification of anti-tumor cell antibodies on tumor cells, called immunoglobulins, which the human body produces to defend itself against the circulating tumor cells.. From this, an assessment can be made whether the body itself has produced an antibody response to the tumor cells or not.


Not all sarcoma cells or circulating tumor cells originating from sarcoma express the epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM), which form the basis of the maintrac® analysis. As such, additional testing of placental alkaline phosphatase (PLAP) on the circulating tumor cells is recommended for use in clinical diagnosis. PLAP is a membranous enzyme which can frequently be found on the surface of poorly differentiated cells such as sarcoma cells. PLAP mainly helps in detection of tumor cells which are very immature.


Just as in cases of sarcoma, PLAP can be determined in cases of glioblastoma (see the previous section). Characterization of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) is also important as this is often overexpressed and modified by mutations.

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