BMC Cancer [electronic resource]
Female breast cancer is frequently diagnosed at a later stage and the leading cause of cancer deaths world-wide. Levels of cell-free circulating microRNAs (miRNAs) can potentially be used as biomarkers to measure disease progression in breast cancer patients in a non-invasive way and are therefore of high clinical value.
Using quantitative RT-PCR, circulating miRNAs were measured in blood samples collected from disease-free individuals (n = 34), triple-negative breast tumours (TNBC) (n = 36) and luminal tumours (n = 57). In addition to intergroup comparisons, plasma miRNA expression levels of all groups were analyzed against RNASeq data from cancerous breast tissue via The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA).
A differential set of 18 miRNAs were identified in the plasma of breast cancer patients and 10 miRNAs were uniquely identified based on ROC analysis. The most striking findings revealed elevated tumor suppressor let-7 miRNA in luminal breast cancer patients, irrespective of subtype, and elevated miR-195 in plasma of TNBC breast cancer patients. In contrast, hsa-miR-195 and let-7 miRNAs were absent from cancerous TCGA tissue and strongly expressed in surrounding non-tumor tissue indicating that cancerous cells may selectively export tumor suppressor hsa-miR-195 and let-7 miRNAs in order to maintain oncogenesis.
While studies have indicated that the restoration of let-7 and miR-195 may be a potential therapy for cancer, these results suggested that tumor cells may selectively export hsa-miR-195 and let-7 miRNAs thereby neutralizing their potential therapeutic effect. However, in order to facilitate earlier detection of breast cancer, blood based screening of hsa-miR-195 and let-7 may be beneficial in a female patient cohort.
Qattan, A., Intabli, H., Alkhayal, W., Eltabache, C., Tweigieri, T., & Amer, S. (2017). Robust Expression of Tumor Suppressor miRNA's Let-7 and miR-195 Detected in Plasma of Saudi Female Breast Cancer Patients.. BMC Cancer [electronic resource], 17 (1). http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12885-017-3776-5