Examining plasma microRNA markers for colorectal cancer at different stages
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Yan Sun1,5, Yuexin Liu1, David Cogdell1, George A. Calin2,4, Baocun Sun5, Scott Kopetz3, Stanley R. Hamilton1, Wei Zhang1,4
1Department of Pathology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA
2Department of Experimental Therapeutics, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA
3Department of Gastrointestinal Medical Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA
4The Center for RNA Interference and Non-Coding RNAs, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA
5Department of Pathology, Tianjin Medical University Cancer Institute and Hospital, Tianjin 300060, China
Wei Zhang, e-mail: email@example.com
Yan Sun, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Keywords: microRNA, biomarker, plasma, colorectal cancer, stage
Received: September 23, 2015 Accepted: January 23, 2016 Published: February 04, 2016
Circulating microRNAs (miRNAs) have emerged as promising biomarkers; however, few miRNAs have been reproducible and can be used in clinical practice. In this study, we screened the levels of 754 miRNAs using TaqMan array in 50 individual plasma samples from 10 demographically matched healthy controls and 40 colorectal cancer (CRC) patients (10 each of stage I–IV) and identified 22 miRNAs associated with the presence of and stages of CRC. Then we performed the validation for 11 miRNAs in an independent cohort including 187 CRC cases and 47 healthy controls. Comprehensive analyses showed that plasma miR-96 distinguished stage I–IV CRC from healthy controls with an area under curve (AUC) of 0.740; miR-203 separated stage III–IV CRC patients from stage I–II with an AUC of 0.757; and miR-141 differentiated stage IV CRC from stage I–III patients with an AUC of 0.851. Survival analyses showed that plasma miR-96 and miR-200b were independent prognostic factors for overall survival. Thus, we propose four miRNAs (miR-96, miR-203, miR-141 and miR-200b) as clinically validated circulating biomarkers for CRC prognosis that warrant further evaluation for clinical utility.
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