Original Article

Serum microRNA 125b as a diagnostic or prognostic biomarker for advanced NSCLC patients receiving cisplatin-based chemotherapy

En-hai Cui, Hong-jiao Li, Feng Hua, Bin Wang, Wei Mao, Xue-ren Feng, Jian-you Li, Xiang Wang
DOI: 10.1038/aps.2012.125


En-hai CUI1, #, Hong-jiao LI2, #, Feng HUA1, Bin WANG1, Wei MAO1, Xue-ren FENG1, Jian-you LI1, Xiang WANG1, *
1Respiratory Medicine, Huzhou Central Hospital, Huzhou 313000, China; 2Department of Stomatology, Changhai Hospital, Second Military Medical University, Shanghai 200433, China

Aim: To investigate the expression profile of microRNAs in inoperable advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients receiving chemotherapy and the potential relevance of microRNAs to clinicopathological characteristics and prognosis.
Methods: Serum samples were taken from 260 inoperable advanced NSCLC patients and 260 healthy individuals. All the patients received cisplatin-based chemotherapy, including NP/NC regimens, GP/GC regimens, and TP/TC regimens. The serum levels of microRNAs (miR-125b, miR-10b, miR-34a and miR-155) were determined by quantitative real-time PCR.

Results: Serum levels of the 4 microRNAs examined in NSCLC patients were significantly increased as compared with healthy individuals. The levels of miR-125b and miR-155 were changed in a similar pattern: the patients with stage IV disease had the highest one, while the patients with stage III A and stage III B disease showed similar increased levels. The levels of miR-10b and miR-34a in the patients with different stages were increased to similar extent. The level of miR-125b in poorly differentiated cancer was significantly higher than those in well and moderately differentiated cancers, while the levels of miR-10b, miR-34a, and miR-155 did not significantly differ with cancer differentiation. Among the 4 microRNAs examined, only miR-125b was significantly associated with therapeutic response, exhibiting higher expression levels in non-responsive patients. Furthermore, the high level of miR-125b was significantly correlated with poor patient survival. A multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that the expression level of miR-125b was an independent prognostic marker in NSCLC patients.

Conclusion: Our results suggest that miR-125b is a potential diagnostic or prognostic biomarker for NSCLC. This finding has important implications for development of targeted therapeutics to overcome chemotherapeutic resistance in NSCLC.

Keywords: microRNA 125b; biomarker; non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC); cisplatin-based chemotherapy; prognosis

This work was supported by Zhejiang Province Welfare Technology Applied Research Program (2011C33051) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No 31171024).
# These authors contributed equally to this work.
* To whom correspondence should be addressed.
E-mail wangxiang20120531@gmail.com
Received 2012-06-01 Accepted 2012-08-02

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