Table of Contents
International Journal of Proteomics
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 108609, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/108609
Research Article

Identification of a Novel Biomarker for Biliary Tract Cancer Using Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometry

1Department of Medicine and Clinical Oncology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, 1-8-1 Inohana, Chuo-ku, Chiba, Chiba City 260-8670, Japan
2Clinical Proteomics Center, Chiba University Hospital, 1-8-1 Inohana, Chuo-ku, Chiba, Chiba City 260-8670, Japan
3Department of Molecular Diagnosis, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, 1-8-1 Inohana, Chuo-ku, Chiba, Chiba City 260-8670, Japan
4Department of Physics, School of Science, Kitasato University, 1-15-1 Kitasato, Minami-ku, Kanagawa, Sagamihara City 228-8555, Japan
5Laboratory of Proteome Research, National Institute of Biomedical Innovation, 7-6-8 Saito Asagi, Osaka, Ibaraki City 567-0085, Japan
6Department of General Surgery, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, 1-8-1 Inohana, Chuo-ku, Chiba, Chiba City 260-8670, Japan

Received 10 January 2012; Accepted 9 June 2012

Academic Editor: Terence C. W. Poon

Copyright © 2012 Shintaro Kikkawa et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Early diagnosis of biliary tract cancer (BTC) is important for curative surgical resection. Current tumor markers of BTC are unsatisfactory in terms of sensitivity and specificity. In a search for novel biomarkers for BTC, serum samples obtained from 62 patients with BTC were compared with those from patients with benign biliary diseases and from healthy controls, using the MALDI-TOF/TOF ClinProt system. Initial screening and further validation identified a peak at 4204 Da with significantly greater intensity in the BTC samples. The 4204 Da peak was partially purified and identified as a fragment of prothrombin by amino acid sequencing. The sensitivity of the 4204 Da peptide for detection of stage I BTC cancer was greater than those for CEA and CA19-9. Also, serum levels of the 4204 Da peptide were above the cut-off level in 15 (79%) of 19 cases in which the CEA and CA19-9 levels were both within their cut-off values. Receiver operating characteristic analysis showed that the combination of the 4204 Da peptide and CA19-9 was significantly more sensitive for detection of stage I BTC cancer compared to CEA and CA19-9. These results suggest that this protein fragment may be a promising biomarker for biliary tract cancer.