Vol. 46 (x): 2020 May 5.[Ahead of print]

doi: 10.1590/S1677-5538.IBJU.2021.99.02


Jorge Luis Wilson Jr. 1, Mariana Pereira Antoniassi 1, Paula Intasqui Lopes 1, Hatylas Azevedo 1
1 Departamento de Cirurgia, Divisão de Urologia, Universidade Federal de São Paulo – UNIFESP, São Paulo, SP, Brasil


Purpose: Proteomic biomarkers have been emerging as alternative methods to the gold standard procedures of cystoscopy and urine cytology in the diagnosis and surveillance of bladder cancer (BC). This review aims to update the state of the art of proteomics research and diagnosis in BC.
Materials and Methods: We reviewed the current literature related to BC research on urinary, tissue, blood and cell line proteomics, using the Pubmed database.
Findings: Two urinary protein biomarkers are FDA-approved (NMP22® and BTA® tests), only if performed along with cystoscopy for surveillance after initial diagnosis, but not in the primary diagnostic setting due to high false-positive rates in case of infections, stones and hematuria. There are a great number of non-FDA approved proteins being studied, with good preliminary results; panels of proteins seem valuable tools to be refined in ongoing trials. Blood proteins are a bigger challenge, because of the complexity of the serum protein profile and the scarcity of blood proteomic studies in BC. Previous studies with the BC tissue proteome do not correlate well with the urinary proteome, likely due to the tumor heterogeneity. Cell line proteomic research helps in the understanding of basic mechanisms that drive BC development and progression; the main difficulty is culturing low-grade tumors in vitro, which represents the majority of BC tumors in clinical practice.
Conclusion: Protein biomarkers have promising value in the diagnosis, surveillance and prognostic of BC. Urine is the most appropriate body fluid for biomarker research in BC due to its easiness of sampling, stability and enrichment of shed and secreted tumor-specific proteins. Panels of biomarkers may exhibit higher sensitivity than single proteins in the diagnosis of BC at larger populations due to clinical and tumor heterogeneity. Prospective clinical trials are warranted to validate the relevance of proteomic data in the clinical management of BC.

Keywords: Urinary Bladder Neoplasms; Proteomics; Biomarkers

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