The Research Roundup provides an overview of the past week’s research from Mayo Medical Laboratories consultants, including featured abstracts and complete list of published studies and reviews.
Gastric adenocarcinoma (GAC) is the third most common cause of cancer mortality worldwide. Accurate and affordable non-invasive detection methods have potential value for screening and surveillance. Mayo Clinic researchers identify novel methylated DNA markers (MDMs) for GAC, validate their discrimination for GAC in tissues from geographically separate cohorts, explore marker acquisition through the oncogenic cascade, and describe distributions of candidate MDMs in plasma from GAC cases and normal controls. Following discovery by unbiased whole methylome sequencing, candidate MDMs were validated by blinded methylation-specific PCR in archival case-control tissues from U.S. and South Korean patients. Top MDMs were then assayed by an analytically sensitive method (quantitative real-time allele-specific target and signal amplification) in a blinded pilot study on archival plasma from GAC cases and normal controls. Based on the findings, novel MDMs appear to accurately discriminate GAC from normal controls in both tissue and plasma. The point of aberrant methylation during oncogenesis varies by MDM, which may have relevance to marker selection in clinical applications. Further exploration of these MDMs for GAC screening and surveillance is warranted. The study was published in Clinical Cancer Research.