Expression profile of circulating microRNAs in the Correa pathway of progression to gastric cancer

Posted on 2018-02-28 - 12:00

Helicobacter pylori infection causes long-term chronic active gastritis, a risk factor for the intestinal and diffuse forms of gastric cancer. Most gastric cancers develop in a stepwise progression from chronic active gastritis to precursor lesions of gastric cancer. The early detection of gastric cancer improves survival. Studies with recent evidence have proposed circulating-microRNAs as biomarkers of cancer.


The purpose of this study was to explore the circulating-microRNA profile from H. pylori infection to gastric adenocarcinoma.


One hundred and twenty-three patients were enrolled and assigned to the discovery or the validation sets. In the discovery phase, circulating-microRNAs were measured by dye-based quantitative polymerase chain reaction and a selection of circulating-microRNAs was validated by probe-based quantitative polymerase chain reaction. A quality control protocol was used.


One hundred and sixty-seven circulating-microRNAs were detected. Precursor lesions of gastric cancer and gastric cancer patients showed the downregulation of eight and five circulating-microRNAs, respectively. We further validated the deregulation of miR-196a-5p in precursor lesions of gastric cancer and the deregulation of miR-134-5p, miR-144-3p and miR-451a in gastric cancer. However, circulating-microRNAs exhibited moderate diagnostic performance due to the overlap of circulating-microRNA expression between non-cancer and cancer patients. miR-144-3p/miR-451a expression levels were correlated. Interestingly, these microRNAs are in 17q11.2, a site of rearrangements associated with gastric cancer.


Circulating-microRNAs are deregulated in precancerous and gastric cancer patients but efforts are needed to improve their diagnostic accuracy.


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