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PLoS One. 2019 Sep 4;14(9):e0222024. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0222024. eCollection 2019.

Serum microRNA-based prediction of responsiveness to eribulin in metastatic breast cancer.

Author information

Department of Breast and Medical Oncology, National Cancer Center Hospital, Tokyo, Japan.
Department of Breast Medical Oncology, National Center for Global Health and Medicine, Tokyo, Japan.
Division of Molecular and Cellular Medicine, National Cancer Center Research Institute, Tokyo, Japan.
Toray Industries, Inc., Kanagawa, Japan.
Dynacom Co., Ltd., Chiba, Japan.
Department of Biobank and Tissue Resources, National Cancer Center Research Institute, Tokyo, Japan.
Department of Gastrointestinal Medical Oncology, National Cancer Center Hospital, Tokyo, Japan.


The identification of biomarkers for predicting the responsiveness to eribulin in patients with metastatic breast cancer pretreated with an anthracycline and a taxane remains an unmet need. Here, we established a serum microRNA (miRNA)-based prediction model for the emergence of new distant metastases after eribulin treatment. Serum samples were collected from metastatic breast cancer patients prior to eribulin treatment and comprehensively evaluated by miRNA microarray. The prediction model for estimating eribulin efficacy was established using the logistic LASSO regression model. Serum samples were collected from 147 patients, of which 52 developed at least one new distant metastasis after eribulin monotherapy and 95 did not develop new distant metastases. A combination of eight serum miRNAs (miR-4483, miR-8089, miR-4755-3p, miR-296-3p, miR-575, miR-4710, miR-5698 and miR-3160-5p) predicted the appearance of new distant metastases with an area under the curve of 0.79, sensitivity of 0.69 and specificity of 0.82. The serum levels of miR-8089 and miR-5698 were significantly associated with overall survival after the initiation of eribulin treatment. The present study provides evidence that serum miRNA profiling may serve as a biomarker for the responsiveness to eribulin and for predicting the development of new distant metastases in metastatic breast cancer.

Conflict of interest statement

JK and ST are employees of Toray Industries, Inc., the provider of the 3D-Gene® system. YA is an employee of Dynacom Co., Ltd., the developer of the statistical script used for selecting the best miRNA combination. There are no other competing interests to declare. This does not effect our adherence to PLOS ONE's policies on data and materials sharing.

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