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Validation of Molecular Signature of microRNAs in Liquid Biopsy for Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Diagnosis

Grant number: 24/00524-4
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): May 01, 2024
Effective date (End): April 30, 2025
Field of knowledge:Health Sciences - Medicine - Medical Clinics
Principal Investigator:Letícia Ferro Leal
Grantee:Alessandro Pascon Filho
Host Institution: Hospital do Câncer de Barretos. Fundação Pio XII (FP). Barretos , SP, Brazil


Introduction: Lung cancer is the second most common neoplasm worldwide and the most lethal. The low survival rate is attributed to late-stage diagnosis, which is the primary factor influencing the patient's prognosis. Currently, strategies based on the analysis of body fluids (liquid biopsy) are increasingly being used; however, the application of this type of analysis in screening programs remains in its early stages. The presence of circulating miRNAs in body fluids can serve as biomarkers for early diagnosis of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) due to their structural stability, enabling and facilitating their detection.Objective: To validate the microRNA signature in liquid biopsy samples for the early diagnosis of non-small cell lung cancer.Materials and Methods: A prospective case-control study of body fluid samples (sputum and plasma) from 278 individuals, treated at the Hospital de Amor de Barretos (cases) or participating in the lung cancer screening program (controls). MicroRNA expression will be evaluated using digital droplet PCR (ddPCR) methodology. In data analysis, the QuantaSoft software provides the number of droplets generated for each sample. The software adjusts the fraction of positive droplets using Poisson correction.Expected Results: It is expected to validate a miRNA signature with high sensitivity and specificity. The miRNA panel acquired in this project could be implemented in lung cancer screening programs without the need for invasive procedures.

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