microRNAs with prognostic significance in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma: a meta-analysis

Frampton AE, Krell J, Jamieson NB, Gall TMH, GIOVANNETTI E. Funel N, Mato Prado M, Krell D, Habib NA, Castellano L, Jiao LR, Stebbing J.

Eur J Cancer. 2015 Jul;51(11):1389-404. doi: 10.1016/j.ejca.2015.04.006


BACKGROUND: Reports have described the prognostic relevance of microRNAs (miRNAs) in patients treated for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC). However, many of these include small numbers of patients. To increase statistical power and improve translation, we performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to determine a pooled conclusion. We examined the impact of miRNAs on overall survival (OS) and disease-free survival (DFS) in PDAC.

METHODS: Eligible studies were identified and quality assessed using multiple search strategies (last search December 2014). Data were collected from studies correlating clinical outcomes with dysregulated tumoural or blood miRNAs. Studies were pooled, and combined hazard ratios (HRs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were used to estimate strength of the associations.

RESULTS: Twenty studies involving 1525 patients treated for PDAC were included. After correcting for publication bias, OS was significantly shortened in patients with high tumoural miR-21 (adjusted HR = 2.48; 1.96-3.14). This result persisted when only studies adjusting for adjuvant chemotherapy were combined (adjusted HR = 2.72; 1.91-3.89). High miR-21 also predicted reduced DFS (adjusted HR = 3.08; 1.78-5.33). Similarly, we found significant adjusted HRs for poor OS for high miR-155, high miR-203, and low miR-34a; and unadjusted HRs for high miR-222 and high miR-10b. The small number of studies, limited number of miRNAs and paucity of multivariate analyses are the limitations of our study.

CONCLUSIONS: This is the first rigorous pooled analysis assessing miRNAs as prognostic biomarkers in PDAC. Tumoural miR-21 overexpression emerged as an important predictor of poor prognosis after PDAC resection independent of other clinicopathologic factors, including adjuvant chemotherapy use.

Link: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26002251