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Validation of a plasma extracellular vesicle miRNA (EV-miRNA) diagnostic signature for lung cancer

Research aim

To develop a highly predictive model for detecting lung cancer from a blood test.

Research aim

Background

Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are tiny membranous bubbles released from cells transferring molecular signals (RNA and proteins) between them.

Preliminary evidence indicates presence of cancer-EV content in lung cancer patient fluids with potential in early diagnosis. However, these are still early observations requiring significant validation.

In a Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation-funded pilot project last year, we screened 2087micro RNAs in the blood plasma of 50 lung cancer patients and 47 age/gender matched controls.

Sophisticated statistical analysis shows that a subgroup of them can contribute to a successful prediction model of lung cancer. This result requires validation in an independent set.

We expect to validate a test consisting of 4-8 targets incorporated into a highly predictive model for detecting lung cancer patients from a blood test.

Dr. Liloglou, University of Liverpool

What is the problem to be addressed?

It is clear that early diagnosis of lung cancer is imperative to save lives.

Consequently, a high sensitivity and specificity test is required that can be used easily and acquired in a non-invasive manner, such as blood.

Expected findings and potential impact

We expect to validate a test consisting of 4-8 targets incorporated into a highly predictive model for detecting lung cancer patients from a blood test.

We intend to further develop the resulting blood-based diagnostic assay for clinical use in lung cancer detection.Upon successful outcome, the test will be pushed into a clinical trial, prior to its medical implementation.

Lead researcher: Dr Triantafillos Liloglou | Location: University of Liverpool| Type of research: Early detection