The nuclear deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) content of tumor cells and the exudative stromal reaction were compared in materials obtained from the same patients both at the thme of surgery and autopsy. There were nine cases of gastric carcinoma and six of colorectal carcinoma. All patients had undergone surgical resection of their primary tumors, survived for over three years and died following a recurrence. The nuclear DNA content of the recurrent or metastatic tumors obtained at autopsy did not appreciably increase, although the exudative stromal reaction was invariably less or even absent. The results of this study suggest that the DNA distribution pattern in gastric and colorectal carcinomas does not change significantly throughout the entire course of the disease, which thus reflects an unchanging biological behavior in these tumors. Furthermore, the exudative stromal reaction decreases at the end stage, implying extensive diminution in host defense mechanisms.
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