Urinary biomarkers and their potential for the non-invasive detection of endometrial cancer

Kelechi Njoku, Davide Chiasserini, Eleanor Jones, Chloe Barr, Helena O'Flynn, Anthony Whetton, Emma Crosbie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Endometrial cancer is the most common malignancy of the female genital tract and its incidence is rising in parallel with the mounting prevalence of obesity. Early diagnosis has great potential to improve outcomes as treatment can be curative, especially for early stage disease. Current tests and procedures for diagnosis are limited by insufficient accuracy in some and unacceptable levels of invasiveness and discomfort in others. There has, therefore, been a growing interest in the search for sensitive and specific biomarkers for endometrial cancer detection based on non- invasive sampling methodologies. Urine, the prototype non-invasive sample, is attractive for biomarker discovery as it is easily accessible and can be collected repeatedly and in quantity. Identification of urinary biomarkers for endometrial cancer detection relies on the excretion of systemic biomarkers by the kidneys or urinary contamination by biomarkers shed from the uterus. In this review, we present the current standing of the search for endometrial cancer urinary biomarkers based on cytology, genomic, transcriptomic, proteomic and metabolomic platforms. We summarise the biomarker candidates and highlight the challenges inherent in urinary biomarker discovery. We review the various technologies with promise for biomarker detection and assess these novel approaches for endometrial cancer biomarker research.
Original languageEnglish
JournalFrontiers in Oncology
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 12 Oct 2020


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