Quantitative detection of SRY-Box 21 (SOX21) gene promoter methylation as a stool-based noninvasive biomarker for early diagnosis of colorectal cancer by MethyLight method
Keivan Moradi1, Esmaeil Babaei2, Mohammad Ali Hosseinpour Feizi2, Reza Safaralizadeh2, Nayebali Rezvani3
1 Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah; Department of Animal Biology, Faculty of Natural Science, University of Tabriz, Tabriz, Iran
2 Department of Animal Biology, Faculty of Natural Science, University of Tabriz, Tabriz, Iran
3 Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran
Background: In recent years, the study of potential epigenetic biomarkers in feces has been an attractive research approach for the noninvasive diagnosis of colorectal cancer (CRC). The aim of this study was to evaluate the stool-based DNA methylation potential of SRY-Box 21 (SOX21) gene promoter as an appropriate candidate biomarker for differentiating CRC patients and healthy individuals for the first time.
Methods: The MethyLight method was performed to analyze the methylation status of SOX21 gene promoter in fecal samples from 40 patients with CRC and 40 healthy controls. In addition, the diagnostic efficiency of measuring the hypermethylated SOX21 gene in the feces to the fecal occult blood test (FOBT) was compared.
Results: The percentage of methylated reference (PMR) values in the stool of CRC patients (median 1.44) was higher than those of healthy individuals (median 0.00) (P < 0.001). A sensitivity of 72.5% and specificity of 100% were obtained for SOX21 gene promoter methylation status and 29 of the patients were considered as positive in methylation status. There was no significant association between PMR values and demographic/clinicopathological features (P > 0.05).
Conclusion: The results of the present study demonstrated that the stool-based assay of SOX21 gene promoter methylation has a relatively high sensitivity and specificity and it may serve as a noninvasive biomarker for early detection of CRC. However, more studies with a wide range of samples are required to further confirm the role of hypermethylation of SOX21 in the early CRC diagnosis.
Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None