Since the discovery of small non-coding RNAs, the analysis of microRNA (miRNA) expression patterns in human cancer have provided new insights into cancer biology. Evidence suggests that deregulated miRNA expression is associated with pancreatic cancer development. In this study, we analyzed the expression of several miRNAs in different types of pancreatic disease to determine if miRNA expression could aid in the diagnosis of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) and its precursor, pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasm (PanIN). Pancreatic resection specimens were selected, which included PDAC (n = 16), benign pancreatic parenchyma from corresponding carcinoma cases (n = 16), chronic pancreatitis (n = 4), normal pancreatic parenchyma (n = 5), and PanIN (n = 5). The expression levels of five miRNA (miR-148a, miR-217, miR-21, miR-196a, and miR-10b) were assessed by quantitative real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) assays. Our data demonstrate that compared to the normal pancreatic parenchyma, miR-148a and miR-217 expression levels were down-regulated in PanIN, particularly in PanIN II-III and PDAC, whereas the level of miR-196 was significantly up-regulated in PDAC and its precursor, PanIN II-III. In addition, we observed that miR-21 was significantly overexpressed in PDAC, and miR-10b was highly expressed in PanIN II-III. Our study demonstrates that certain miRNAs, especially miR-148a, miR-217, and miR-196a, are significantly deregulated in PDAC, including in the early stage of PDAC. These markers can potentially be used as diagnostic markers to distinguish PDAC and its precursor from benign lesions.
- Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma
- Pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasm
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
- Cancer Research