Exosomal microRNA-141 (miR-141) is upregulated in the serum from patients with prostate cancer compared with patients with benign prostate hyperplasia or healthy volunteers, and exosomal miR-141 may be a potentially useful biomarker for the diagnosis of metastatic prostate cancer. These are the conclusions reached by researchers from the People’s Republic of China based on the results of their study reported online on December 31, 2015 by Dove Medical Press. In its study, the Chinese research team sought to investigate and assess whether exosomal miR-141 might be an effective biomarker for prostate cancer, noting that novel biomarkers for the diagnosis of prostate cancer are urgently required. In the study, exosomes were isolated from the serum of patients with prostate cancer, patients with benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH), and healthy volunteers. The total RNA was extracted from the exosomes and the level of miR-141 was analyzed by quantitative reverse transcription-PCR. The expression levels of miR-141 were compared between the whole serum and the serum exosomes of the three groups. Subsequently, the relevance of the exosomal expression of miR-141 to the clinic-pathological factors in prostate cancer (PCa) was investigated. The results showed that the expression of miR-141 was higher in exosomes compared with whole serum (control group, P=0.0003; BPH group, P=0.0016; PCa group, P<0.0001). The level of serum exosomal miR-141 was significantly higher in the patients with PCa compared with the patients with BPH and the healthy controls (3.85-fold, P=0.0007 and 4.06-fold, P=0.0005, respectively). In addition, the expression levels were significantly higher in metastatic PCa compared with localized PCa (P<0.0001).
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