AUG 22, 2018 10:38 PM PDT

Biomarker Predicts Kidney Cancer

WRITTEN BY: Nouran Amin

A research study led by Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center has discovered a tumor biomarker that could be used to determine the onset of renal cell carcinoma (RCC) years before cancer can be diagnosed. The study examined a protein known as KIM-1 which increases in the blood of patients with RCC at the time of diagnosis. The protein can also be utilized to predict the onset of the disease for up to five years prior to diagnosis. Lead investigator of the study, Rupal Bhatt from Harvard Medical School, believes that the study provided evidence of a significant relationship between plasma KIM-1 concentrations and the risk of renal cell carcinoma.

Additionally, the research team found that KIM-1 concentrations were related to poor survival rates. “Further studies are needed, but a sensitive and specific tumor marker that can detect early-stage RCC would have strong potential to improve overall survival," explains Bhatt.

Image Credit: Harish Hospital

Bhatt and research team utilized data from the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC). They used this data to compare the blood KIM-1 level in samples taken from individuals who have had RCC within five years with the level of KIM-1 in the blood of healthy individuals. This study was reported in the journal Clinical Cancer Research. Results of the study showed that among the individuals who were eventually diagnosed with RCC the team found that the level of KIM-1 was double the level of those found in healthy participants.

Most importantly, KIM-1 level was integrated into a model for predicting the risk of kidney cancer and the accuracy of the model was increased by approximately two-fold. The co-first author of the study, David Muller, calls the finding as a huge step forward since KIM-1 is the only blood biomarker that known prospectively to differentiate between people’s risk of kidney cancer. However, Muller emphasizes that more work is needed before the blood test can be implemented in the clinic.

“We don't expect that KIM-1 will be useful as a screening test, as the risk of RCC in the general population is low. KIM-1 is more likely to be relevant in high-risk populations or as an adjunct to other diagnostic procedures."

Source: EurekaAlert

About the Author
  • Nouran earned her BS and MS in Biology at IUPUI and currently shares her love of science by teaching. She enjoys writing on various topics as well including science & medicine, global health, and conservation biology. She hopes through her writing she can make science more engaging and communicable to the general public.
You May Also Like
JAN 14, 2020
Clinical & Molecular DX
JAN 14, 2020
Can I eat this donut? A quick test for celiac disease.
Genetic testing revealed that our ancestors have been eating wheat, rye, spelt and barley for over 8,000 years. Today, g ...
APR 13, 2020
Cancer
APR 13, 2020
The Unexpected Role of Mono in Cancer Progression
In the past, the go-to drugs have always been small molecules. These small molecules would interact with the cell and ac ...
APR 06, 2020
Technology
APR 06, 2020
Smart Toilet: The Next Disease-Detecting Technology
The next disease-detecting technology could come to a bathroom near you—the Smart Toilet! A toilet designed to det ...
MAY 14, 2020
Clinical & Molecular DX
MAY 14, 2020
New Tech Has Its AI on Brain Tumors
  A collaboration across 29 research and healthcare agencies is putting together the world’s largest brain tu ...
MAY 26, 2020
Clinical & Molecular DX
MAY 26, 2020
Nanoengineering Aids Bladder Cancer Detection
   
JUN 14, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
JUN 14, 2020
Why Are There So Few Black People in STEM?
On June 10th, 2020, thousands of STEM scientists and organizations around the world went on strike to protest systemic r ...
Loading Comments...