Transcriptomic analysis in liquid biopsy identifies circulating PCTaire-1 mRNA as a biomarker in NSCLC

John Wen Cheng Chang, Chun Liang Shih, Chih Liang Wang, Ji Dung Luo, Chih Wei Wang, Jia Juan Hsieh, Chia Jung Yu, Chiuan Chian Chiou*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

12 Scopus citations


Background/Aim: Circulating mRNA can be a useful source of cancer biomarkers. We took advantage of direct transcriptomic analysis in plasma RNA to identify novel mRNA markers for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Patients and Methods: Plasma RNA from NSCLC patients and healthy individuals was profiled with cDNA-mediated annealing, selection, extension and ligation (DASL) microarrays. The microarray results were further validated in plasma RNA. Results: Through RNA profiling and online database mining, four gene transcripts were filtered as candidate markers of NSCLC. After validation, the PCTAIRE-1 transcript was identified as a circulating mRNA marker. The diagnostic potential of PCTAIRE-1 was evaluated by receiver operating characteristic curve analysis, which gave a sensitivity and specificity of 60% and 85%, respectively. In addition, high plasma PCTK1 levels were also correlated with poor progression-free survival (p=0.008). Conclusion: Circulating mRNA can be profiled with the DASL assay. From the profile, PCTAIRE-1 RNA in the plasma we discovered as a novel diagnostic/prognostic biomarker and an indicator of poor survival in NSCLC patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)91-100
Number of pages10
JournalCancer Genomics and Proteomics
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 International Institute of Anticancer Research. All rights reserved.


  • Biomarker
  • Circulating mRNA
  • Non-small cell lung cancer
  • PCTK1/CDK16


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