Navigation Links
Proteomic profiling shown more accurate than traditional biomarkers in identifying liver cancer

BOSTON As the incidence of liver cancer continues to grow-- fueled in large part, by rising rates of hepatitis C infections so too does the need for tests to help diagnose the disease at an earlier stage. A study appearing in the January 15 issue of Clinical Cancer Research demonstrates that a novel mass-spectrometry based form of proteomic profiling is more accurate than traditional biomarkers in distinguishing liver cancer patients from patients with hepatitis C liver cirrhosis, particularly with regard to identifying patients with small, curable tumors. Led by researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), the study could help lead to earlier diagnostic methods and subsequent treatments -- for liver cancer.

Proteomics represents a potentially powerful tool for the serologic recognition of protein profiles associated with cancer, explains co-senior author Towia Libermann, PhD, Director of the Genomics Center at BIDMC and Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.

Although this particular proteomics technology, SELDI-TOF MS [surface enhanced laser desorption/ionization time of flight mass spectrometry] had already proven capable of identifying liver cancer in some limited studies, this was the first time that the technology was compared side-by-side with the clinical standard biomarker in a cohort of patients at risk for developing the disease, adds Liebermann, who is also Director of the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center Proteomics Core in the Division of Interdisciplinary Medicine and Biotechnology at BIDMC.

Over a single decade, the incidence of liver cancer (hepatocellular carcinoma) increased from 1.8 to 2.5 per 100,000 patients, in large part due to a rise in the spread of hepatitis C virus.

Hepatitis C has become a tremendous public health problem, explains co-senior author Nezam Afdhal, MD, Director of the Liver Center at BIDMC and Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. And a significant number of hepatitis C-infected patients will go on to develop liver cirrhosis. Cirrhosis results when healthy tissue is replaced by scar tissue, preventing the liver from properly functioning. Cirrhosis itself is responsible for more than 25,000 deaths each year. But, adds Afdhal, secondarily, cirrhosis greatly increases a persons chances of developing liver cancer.

Each year, cirrhosis patients have a two to five percent chance that their condition will escalate to cancer, he explains. And the problem is that, right now, there is no reliable means of detecting liver cancer at an early stage, when surgical treatment is an option. Typically by the time the disease is discovered, the cancer has advanced and treatment options become much more limited.

The best hope for early detection is cancer biomarkers, serum proteins found in altered amounts in blood or other body fluids. The current biomarker for liver cancer in clinical use is alpha fetoprotein (AFP). In many cases, patients with hepatitis C undergo routine monitoring for AFP levels as an indicator of whether tumors may have developed in their livers.

But, as Libermann explains, the AFP biomarker has a number of shortcomings, including false positives and false negatives. AFP not only fails to detect many early tumors, but it also lacks specificity. Consequently, elevated AFP levels could be indicators of not only cancer, but also of other liver diseases or even benign conditions, while on the other hand, many patients with small tumors will test negative for AFP.

The authors, therefore, decided to evaluate the sensitivy and specificity of SELDI-TOF MS for the detection of liver cancer and to compare its effectiveness with AFP.

Examining serum samples of 92 patients including 51 patients with liver cirrhosis and 41 patients with liver cancer, and among the cancer patients, individuals with both large and small (less than 2 cm) tumors -- by SELDI-TOF mass spectrometry, the investigators were able to identify an 11-protein signature that accurately discriminated between the cirrhosis and cancer patients, first in a training set (made up of 26 cirrhosis and 20 liver cancer patients), and then again in an independent validation set (consisting of 25 cirrhosis and 19 liver cancer patients). The resulting diagnostic value 74 percent sensitivity and 88 percent specificity compared favorably with the diagnostic accuracy of AFP (73 percent sensitivity and 71 percent specificity) as well as with two other biomarkers currently in clinical development for liver cancer, AFP-L3 and PIVKA-IL.

Most strikingly, notes Libermann, in patients with small tumors (less than 2 cm), where AFP identified only three, and AFP-L3 and PIVKA-II only one each, the 11-protein signature correctly identified seven of eight patients at this early stage of disease.

Biomarkers play a major role in all aspects of personalized medicine, not only in early disease detection, but also in outcome prediction and evaluation of therapeutic responses, he adds. This study provides strong evidence that serum contains early detection biomarkers and supports the notion that a combination of multiple biomarkers may prove more effective than individual biomarkers for diagnosis of liver cancer, as well as other cancers.


Contact: Bonnie Prescott
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

Related medicine news :

1. Story ideas from molecular & cellular proteomics
2. Genomic profiling of lung tumors helps doctors choose most effective treatment
3. Molecular profiling can accurately predict survival in colon cancer patients
4. Gene profiling can single out the worst cases of multiple myeloma and guide therapy
5. Mayo Clinic to Pilot Collexis Expert Profiling
6. MammaPrint(R) Breast Cancer Test Shown To Be Powerful Tool for Prognosis Prediction in Postmenopausal Breast Cancer Patients
7. Once-Daily Exjade(R) Shown to Remove Toxic Iron From the Heart and Liver, According to Data Presented at ASH
8. Wild Blueberries Shown to Fight Oxidative Stress
9. Video game shown to cut cortisol
10. Breaking Study: Masimo Pleth Variability Index (PVI) Shown Effective in Noninvasive Detection of Changes in Ventricular Preload and Fluid Volume
11. Drug Detection Kits Manufactured By IDenta Corp. Shown During French Television Broadcast (at TF1) - Product Aids French Police In Bust of 600 Kilograms Of Cocaine
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/26/2016)... Carolina (PRWEB) , ... June 26, 2016 , ... ... of a new product that was developed to enhance the health of felines. The ... centuries. , The two main herbs in the PawPaws Cat Kidney Support ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Austin residents seeking Mohs surgery services, can ... Surgery and to Dr. Russell Peckham for medical and surgical dermatology. , Dr. Dorsey ... cancer. The selective fellowship in Mohs Micrographic Surgery completed by Dr. Dorsey was under ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... , ... June 25, 2016 , ... As a lifelong ... Cum Laude and his M.D from the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. ... to Los Angeles to complete his fellowship in hematology/oncology at the UCLA-Olive View-Cedars Sinai ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 24, 2016 , ... A recent article published June 14 on ... article goes on to state that individuals are now more comfortable seeking to undergo ... such as calf and cheek reduction. The Los Angeles area medical group, Beverly Hills ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... and Scientific Sessions in Dallas that it will receive two significant new grants ... grants came as PHA marked its 25th anniversary by recognizing patients, medical professionals ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 Capricor Therapeutics, Inc. ... biotechnology company focused on the discovery, development and ... enrollment in its ongoing randomized HOPE-Duchenne clinical trial ... of its 24-patient target. Capricor expects the trial ... of 2016, and to report top line data ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... BOGOTA, Colombia , June 23, 2016  Astellas today announced the establishment of Astellas Farma Colombia (AFC), a ... second affiliate in Latin America . ... ... ... ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016  Experian Health, the healthcare ... the patient payment and care experience, today ... products and services that will enhance the ... offerings. These award-winning solutions will enable healthcare ... compliant in an ever-changing environment and redefine ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: