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REVIEW  NON-INVASIVE BIOMARKERS FOR THE DETECTION OF GASTROINTESTINAL CANCER 

Minerva Biotecnologica 2019 March;31(1):3-10

DOI: 10.23736/S1120-4826.18.02463-1

Copyright © 2018 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Non-invasive biomarkers for gastric cancer diagnosis: ready for prime time?

Davide G. RIBALDONE 1 , Daniele SIMONDI 2, Elisa PETRINI 3, Marco ASTEGIANO 4, Marilena DURAZZO 5

1 Department of Medical Sciences, Division of Gastroenterology, University of Turin, Turin, Italy; 2 Santa Croce e Carle Hospital, Department of Gastroenterol and Digestive Endoscopy, Cuneo, Italy; 3 School for General Practitioner, Turin, Italy; 4 Department of General and Specialist Medicine, Gastroenterologia-U, Città della Salute e della Scienza di Torino, Turin, Italy; 5 Department of Medical Sciences, University of Turin, Turin, Italy



Gastric cancer (GC) is the fifth commonest cancer and the third leading cause of cancer-associated death worldwide. The mortality rate remains high due to the late diagnosis, often formulated when the disease is at an advanced stage. To date, there is no reliable non-invasive blood-based marker for the detection of GC. Conventional serum tumor markers, namely, CEA, carbohydrate antigen 19-9 (CA19-9) and carbohydrate antigen 72-4 (CA72-4) are not tissue specific and are expressed in several gastrointestinal cancers. Circulating tumor cells are specific for GC, but are difficult to separate, being diluted in tumor cell dissemination. Circulating micro-RNAs are present in early stage of GC, are easy to detect, have a high sensitivity and high specificity compared to healthy controls, but there is the problem of the selection of an internal control. Circulating methylated DNAs are present in the early stage of GC, have a high sensitivity, are easy to detect, but are influenced by the tumor size and the rate of clearance. To realize the dream of a “liquid biopsy” in GC, studies in which circulating cell-free tumor-associated nucleic acids with high specificity to distinguish GC from other cancers are needed.


KEY WORDS: Biomarkers - Diagnosis - Stomach neoplasms - MicroRNAs

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