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Biochemical and genetic predictors of overall survival in patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer treated with capecitabine and nab-paclitaxel.


Pancreatic cancer is a dismal disease with a mortality rate almost similar to its incidence rate. To date, there are neither validated predictive nor prognostic biomarkers for this lethal disease. Thus, the aim of the present study was to retrospectively investigate the capability of biochemical parameters and molecular profiles to predict survival of patients with metastatic pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (mPDAC) who participated in a phase II clinical trial to test the safety and efficacy of the combination treatment of capecitabine plus nab-paclitaxel. Herein, we investigated the association of 18 biochemical parameters obtained from routine diagnosis and the clinical outcome of the 30 patients enrolled in the clinical trial. Furthermore, we analysed formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tumour tissue to identify molecular biomarkers via RNA seq and the Illumina TruSeq Amplicon Cancer panel which covers 48 hotspot genes. Our analysis identified SERPINB7 as a novel transcript and a DNA mutation signature that might predict a poor outcome of disease. Moreover, we identified the bilirubin basal level as an independent predictive factor for overall survival in our study cohort.