Interview with Dr. Marie Wood from the University of Vermont Cancer Center

Oncotarget published "Development of a predictive miRNA signature for breast cancer risk among high-risk women " which reported that significant limitations exist in the ability to predict breast cancer risk at the individual level.

The authors evaluated the ability of C-miRNAs to identify women most likely to develop breast cancer by profiling miRNA from serum obtained long before diagnosis.

24 breast cancer cases and controls were identified from women enrolled in the High-Risk Breast Program at the UVM Cancer Center.

The miRNA expression data were input into a stepwise linear regression model to discover a multivariable miRNA signature that predicts long-term risk of breast cancer.

The discovered 6 miRNA risk-signature can discriminate high-risk women who ultimately develop breast cancer from those who remain cancer-free, improving current risk assessment models.

Dr. Nicholas H. Farina and Dr. Marie E. Wood both from The University of Vermont said, "Several models are available for estimation of breast cancer risk; the most widely used include the Gail [1], Claus [2], and International Breast Cancer Intervention Study (IBIS) [3] models "

In breast cancer patients, serum miRNA levels correlate with expression in primary breast tumors.

They postulate that there are measurable differences in C-miRNAs within serum obtained from women at high risk for breast cancer who eventually develop tumors, and those who are at high risk, but remain cancer-free.

To assess this, they analyzed global miRNA levels from serum obtained from women at high risk for breast cancer years prior to cancer development.

Although studies have provided short term risk assessment no studies have yet evaluated the potential of liquid biopsy to predict breast cancer development years before cancer identification.

The Farina/Wood Research Team concluded in their Oncotarget Research Output that the miRNA with the highest individual AUC in our signature, miR-3124-5p, has been associated with triple negative breast cancer, as well as other cancers.

Published studies demonstrate that miR-1184, is located on the X chromosome but has not been studied in breast cancer.

Circulating levels of miR-1184 are reported to be increased in patients with prostate cancer, but were decreased in breast cancer cases in this cohort.

At present, no records for miR-4529-3p exist in PubMed, with our study providing novel cancer association.

Future studies will characterize the role of the identified signature miRNAs on promoting breast cancer development.

DOI - https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.22750

Full text - https://www.oncotarget.com/article/22750/text/

Correspondence to - Nicholas H. Farina - [email protected] and Marie E. Wood - [email protected]

Keywords - microRNA, high risk breast cancer, liquid biopsy, risk signature, benign breast disease

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