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Br J Cancer. 2013 May 14;108(9):1822-9. doi: 10.1038/bjc.2013.148. Epub 2013 Apr 11.

Clinical impact of circulating miR-18a in plasma of patients with oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma.

Author information

1
Division of Digestive Surgery, Department of Surgery, Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, 465 Kajii-cho, Kawaramachihirokoji, Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto, Japan.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Several recent studies demonstrated that microRNAs are stably detectable in plasma/serum. We tested whether miR-18a, which is located in the miR-17-92 cluster and reported to be highly expressed in tissues of oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), served as a plasma biomarker in patients with ESCC.

METHODS:

This study was divided into three steps: (1) confirmation of higher miR-18a levels in primary ESCC tissues and cell lines than normal ESCC tissues and a human fibroblast cell line. (2) Evaluation of the plasma miR-18a assay using quantitative RT-PCR by comparing results from 106 consecutive patients with ESCC and 54 healthy volunteers. (3) Evaluation of the assay for monitoring tumour dynamics in patients with ESCC.

RESULTS:

(1) Expression of miR-18a was significantly higher in ESCC tissues (P=0.0020) and ESCC cell lines (P=0.0121) than normal tissues and fibroblasts. (2) Plasma concentrations of miR-18a were significantly higher in ESCC patients than healthy volunteers (P<0.0001; ESCC patients vs healthy volunteers (mean±s.d.): 11.77±13.45 vs 0.73±0.54 amol μl(-1)). The value of the area under the receiver-operating characteristic (ROC) curve (AUC) was 0.9449. Furthermore, the ROC curves to detect early ESCC such as pTis-1 and pStage0-I showed AUCs of 0.9479 and 0.9642, respectively. (3) Plasma levels of miR-18a were significantly lower in postoperative samples than preoperative samples (P=0.0076).

CONCLUSION:

Plasma miR-18a may be a very useful biomarker for cancer detection and the monitoring of tumour dynamics in patients with ESCC.

PMID:
23579215
PMCID:
PMC3658511
DOI:
10.1038/bjc.2013.148
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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