Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in both men and women in the United States with a dismal 5-year survival rate of <15%. Personalizing our approach to lung cancer through improved modalities for early detection, advancing understanding of biologically distinct sub-phenotypes of histological disease and identification of new molecular targets will be important to improving overall survival. MicroRNAs (miRNAs or mirs) are a family of small non-coding molecules that regulate gene expression and are expressed in many organisms including animals, plants, and viruses. OSU Researchers recently demonstrated that distinct expression patterns of miRNA molecules exist in the peripheral blood of lung cancer patients and that these patterns were similar to those observed in primary tumors. We hypothesize that circulating miRNA may harbor a “signature“ that reflects primary tumor biology and can serve as a non-invasive diagnostic test for risk stratification of patients at risk of lung cancer, as a predictor of response to treatment in patients with untreated lung cancer and as a highly sensitive monitor for the recurrence of treated lung cancer. The identification of a “pattern” of expression of these miRNAs could complement other modalities such as and CT scanning to identify individuals at risk for the development of lung cancer, recurrence of disease prior to evidence by chest x-ray or CT scan and assist in finding new targets for drug development.
- Drug development companies
- Biotechnology companies
- Human and animal health
- Non-invasive method of detection of signals from the primary tumor
- Non-invasive modality for the detection of lung cancer, response to therapy and surveillance
- Requires only 5 ml of peripheral blood