Review
Copyright ©The Author(s) 2016. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.
World J Gastroenterol. Sep 21, 2016; 22(35): 7882-7891
Published online Sep 21, 2016. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v22.i35.7882
Biomarkers for colitis-associated colorectal cancer
Ru Chen, Lisa A Lai, Teresa A Brentnall, Sheng Pan
Ru Chen, Lisa A Lai, Teresa A Brentnall, Sheng Pan, Department of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, United States
Author contributions: All the authors contributed to this manuscript.
Supported by NIH, No. CA164548.
Conflict-of-interest statement: The authors declare no conflict of interest.
Open-Access: This article is an open-access article which was selected by an in-house editor and fully peer-reviewed by external reviewers. It is distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/
Correspondence to: Ru Chen, PhD, Department of Medicine, University of Washington, 1959 NE Pacific St, Seattle, WA 98195, United States. ruc@medicine.washington.edu
Telephone: +1-206-2214109 Fax: +1-206-6859478
Received: April 20, 2016
Peer-review started: April 21, 2016
First decision: May 27, 2016
Revised: June 30, 2016
Accepted: August 1, 2016
Article in press: August 1, 2016
Published online: September 21, 2016
Abstract

Patients with extensive ulcerative colitis (UC) of more than eight years duration have an increased risk of colorectal cancer. Molecular biomarkers for dysplasia and cancer could have a great clinical value in managing cancer risk in these UC patients. Using a wide range of molecular techniques - including cutting-edge OMICS technologies - recent studies have identified clinically relevant biomarker candidates from a variety of biosamples, including colonic biopsies, blood, stool, and urine. While the challenge remains to validate these candidate biomarkers in multi-center studies and with larger patient cohorts, it is certain that accurate biomarkers of colitis-associated neoplasia would improve clinical management of neoplastic risk in UC patients. This review highlights the ongoing avenues of research in biomarker development for colitis-associated colorectal cancer.

Keywords: Biomarker, Colitis, Dysplasia, Colorectal cancer, Surveillance, Progressor, Non-progressor

Core tip: With the incidence of ulcerative colitis on the rise, there is a need to develop clinically useful biomarkers capable of identifying and monitoring the subset of ulcerative colitis (UC) patients at highest risk for developing colon cancer. Recent studies have reported the efforts in developing clinically relevant biomarkers, laying a foundation for further clinical biomarker development. While the challenge remains to validate these candidate biomarkers in multi-center studies using larger patient cohorts, it is certain that accurate biomarkers of colitis-associated neoplasia would improve current clinical management of neoplastic risk in UC patients.