Introduction: Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) accounts for approximately 90% of oral malignancies and has a 5-year mortality rate close to 50%. A consistent part (70%) of all oral cancers is diagnosed at an advanced stage since available screening techniques are ineffective. Therefore, it would be urgent to improve them. The diagnostic gold standard is tissue biopsy with histological and immunohistochemical assessment. This method presents some limitations. Biopsy is invasive and the histopathological evaluation is semi-quantitative, and the absolute abundance of the target cannot be reliably determined. In addition, tissue is highly processed and may lead to loss of information of the natural state. The search for classical and new clinical biomarkers on fragments of tissue/cells collected with a cytobrush is a highly hopeful technique for early detection and diagnosis of OSCC, because of its non-invasive sampling and easy collection method. Methods: Here we analyzed cytobrush biopsies samples collected from the oral cavity of 15 patients with already diagnosed OSCC by applying an innovative high-sensitivity ELISA technique, in order to verify if this approach may provide useful information for detection, diagnosis, and prognosis of OSCC. To this end, we selected six biomarkers, already used in clinical practice for the diagnosis of OSCC (EGFR, Ki67, p53) or selected based on recent scientific and clinical data which indicate their presence or over-expression in cells undergoing transformation and their role as possible molecular targets in immunecheckpoints blockade therapies (PD-L1, HLA-E, B7-H6). Results: The selected tumor biomarkers were highly expressed in the tumor core, while were virtually negative in healthy tissue collected from the same patients. These differences were highly statistically significant and consistent with those obtained using the gold standard test clearly indicating that the proposed approach, i.e. analysis of biomarkers by a custom ELISA technique, is strongly reliable. Discussion: These preliminary data suggest that this non-invasive rapid phenotyping technique could be useful as a screening tool for phenotyping oral lesions and support clinical practice by precise indications on the characteristics of the lesion, also with a view to the application of new anti-tumor treatments, such as immunotherapy, aimed at OSCC patients.

A new method for oral cancer biomarkers detection with a non-invasive cyto-salivary sampling and rapid-highly sensitive ELISA immunoassay: a pilot study in humans

Rebaudi F.;Greppi M.;Pistilli R.;Iacoviello P.;Pesce S.;Bianchi B.;Rebaudi A.;Marcenaro E.
2023-01-01

Abstract

Introduction: Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) accounts for approximately 90% of oral malignancies and has a 5-year mortality rate close to 50%. A consistent part (70%) of all oral cancers is diagnosed at an advanced stage since available screening techniques are ineffective. Therefore, it would be urgent to improve them. The diagnostic gold standard is tissue biopsy with histological and immunohistochemical assessment. This method presents some limitations. Biopsy is invasive and the histopathological evaluation is semi-quantitative, and the absolute abundance of the target cannot be reliably determined. In addition, tissue is highly processed and may lead to loss of information of the natural state. The search for classical and new clinical biomarkers on fragments of tissue/cells collected with a cytobrush is a highly hopeful technique for early detection and diagnosis of OSCC, because of its non-invasive sampling and easy collection method. Methods: Here we analyzed cytobrush biopsies samples collected from the oral cavity of 15 patients with already diagnosed OSCC by applying an innovative high-sensitivity ELISA technique, in order to verify if this approach may provide useful information for detection, diagnosis, and prognosis of OSCC. To this end, we selected six biomarkers, already used in clinical practice for the diagnosis of OSCC (EGFR, Ki67, p53) or selected based on recent scientific and clinical data which indicate their presence or over-expression in cells undergoing transformation and their role as possible molecular targets in immunecheckpoints blockade therapies (PD-L1, HLA-E, B7-H6). Results: The selected tumor biomarkers were highly expressed in the tumor core, while were virtually negative in healthy tissue collected from the same patients. These differences were highly statistically significant and consistent with those obtained using the gold standard test clearly indicating that the proposed approach, i.e. analysis of biomarkers by a custom ELISA technique, is strongly reliable. Discussion: These preliminary data suggest that this non-invasive rapid phenotyping technique could be useful as a screening tool for phenotyping oral lesions and support clinical practice by precise indications on the characteristics of the lesion, also with a view to the application of new anti-tumor treatments, such as immunotherapy, aimed at OSCC patients.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11567/1134895
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