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Analytical and bioanalytical chemistry

Study of urinary steroid hormone disorders: difference between hepatocellular carcinoma in early stage and cirrhosis.


PMID 24817358

Abstract

Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the fifth most common cancer in the world. Discovery of novel biomarkers for early HCC from other liver diseases such as cirrhosis is of great clinical benefit. In this study, a novel steroid hormone metabolomic method based on liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry combined with logistic regression analysis was applied to study the steroid hormone disorders and to screen potential urinary steroid hormone biomarkers of early HCC. Thirty-six urinary steroid hormones were detected and quantified in healthy controls, cirrhotic patients, and early HCC patients. Heat map analysis and multivariate statistical analysis suggested severe disorders of steroid hormone network and holistically decreased urinary steroid hormone pattern in cirrhotic and early HCC patients. Logistic regression analysis reveals that a panel of two urinary steroid hormones (epitestosterone and allotetrahydrocortisol) displayed excellent diagnostic capability for distinguishing early HCC from cirrhosis with area under the curve (AUC) = 0.938 of receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis. These results help to overcome the disadvantage of lower sensitivity and specificity of alpha-fetoprotein for distinguishing early HCC from cirrhosis. Our work shows that steroid hormone metabolomics is a promising biomarker tool for biomarker study of early HCC.

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