Metabolomics for biomarker discovery in the diagnosis, prognosis, survival and recurrence of colorectal cancer: a systematic review

Fan Zhang, Yuanyuan Zhang, Weiwei Zhao, Kui Deng, Zhuozhong Wang, Chunyan Yang, Libing Ma, Margarita S. Openkova, Yan Hou _ and Kang Li

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Oncotarget. 2017; 8:35460-35472. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.16727

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Fan Zhang1, Yuanyuan Zhang1, Weiwei Zhao1, Kui Deng1, Zhuozhong Wang1, Chunyan Yang1, Libing Ma1, Margarita S. Openkova2, Yan Hou1 and Kang Li1

1 Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public Health, Harbin Medical University, Harbin, P.R. China

2 Harbin Medical University, Harbin, P.R. China

Correspondence to:

Yan Hou, email:

Kang Li, email:

Keywords: systematic review; metabolomics; CRC; biomarkers; pathway

Received: October 31, 2016 Accepted: February 06, 2017 Published: March 30, 2017


Colorectal cancer (CRC) remains an incurable disease. There are no effective noninvasive techniques that have achieved colorectal cancer (CRC) diagnosis, prognosis, survival and recurrence in clinic. To investigate colorectal cancer metabolism, we perform an electronic literature search, from 1998 to January 2016, for studies evaluating the metabolomic profile of patients with CRC regarding the diagnosis, recurrence, prognosis/survival, and systematically review the twenty-three literatures included. QUADOMICS tool was used to assess the quality of them. We highlighted the metabolism perturbations based on metabolites and pathway. Metabolites related to cellular respiration, carbohydrate, lipid, protein and nucleotide metabolism were significantly altered in CRC. Altered metabolites were also related to prognosis, survival and recurrence of CRC. This review could represent the most comprehensive information and summary about CRC metabolism to date. It certificates that metabolomics had great potential on both discovering clinical biomarkers and elucidating previously unknown mechanisms of CRC pathogenesis.

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