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Nat Rev Urol. 2013 Jun;10(6):327-35. doi: 10.1038/nrurol.2013.89. Epub 2013 Apr 30.

DNA methylation-based biomarkers in bladder cancer.

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Department of Pathology, Erasmus MC, P. O. Box 2040, 3000 CA Rotterdam, The Netherlands.


Urinary bladder cancer is the fifth most common cancer in the Western world. Increasing evidence has shown that DNA methylation in bladder cancer is expansive and is implicated in pathogenesis. Furthermore, distinct methylation patterns have been identified between non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) and muscle-invasive bladder cancer (MIBC), as well as between FGFR3-mutant and wild-type tumours. Given these distinctions in expression, methylated genes have been proposed as diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers for patients with bladder cancer. Indeed, several studies have revealed that methylated genes--including CDH1, FHIT, LAMC2, RASSF1A, TIMP3, SFRP1, SOX9, PMF1 and RUNX3--are associated with poor survival in patients with MIBC. Further validation of these markers for prognostication as well as surveillance (of patients with NMIBC) is required. Validated markers for progression, diagnosis, survival and BCG response will contribute to clinical decision-making and individualized treatment.

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