The combination of autofluorescence endoscopy and molecular biomarkers is a novel diagnostic tool for dysplasia in Barrett's oesophagus

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Design: We performed a cross-sectional prospective study in three tertiary referral centres. Patients with BO underwent high-resolution endoscopy followed by AFI-targeted biopsies. 157 patients completed the biopsy protocol. Aneuploidy/tetraploidy; 9p and 17p loss of heterozygosity; RUNX3, HPP1 and p16 methylation; p53 and cyclin A immunohistochemistry were assessed. Bootstrap resampling was used to select the best diagnostic biomarker panel for high-grade dysplasia (HGD) and early cancer (EC). This panel was validated in an independent cohort of 46 patients. Objective: Endoscopic surveillance for Barrett's oesophagus (BO) is limited by sampling error and the subjectivity of diagnosing dysplasia. We aimed to compare a biomarker panel on minimal biopsies directed by autofluorescence imaging (AFI) with the standard surveillance protocol to derive an objective tool for dysplasia assessment. Results: Aneuploidy, p53 immunohistochemistry and cyclin A had the strongest association with dysplasia in the per-biopsy analysis and, as a panel, had an area under the receiver operating characteristic curve of 0.97 (95% CI 0.95 to 0.99) for diagnosing HGD/EC. The diagnostic accuracy for HGD/EC of the three-biomarker panel from AFI+ areas was superior to AFI-areas (p<0.001). Compared with the standard protocol, this panel had equal sensitivity for HGD/EC, with a 4.5-fold reduction in the number of biopsies. In an independent cohort of patients, the panel had a sensitivity and specificity for HGD/EC of 100% and 85%, respectively. Conclusions: A three-biomarker panel on a small number of AFI-targeted biopsies provides an accurate and objective diagnosis of dysplasia in BO. The clinical implications have to be studied further.




Pietro, M. D., Boerwinkel, D. F., Shariff, M. K., Liu, X., Telakis, E., Lao-Sirieix, P., … Fitzgerald, R. C. (2015). The combination of autofluorescence endoscopy and molecular biomarkers is a novel diagnostic tool for dysplasia in Barrett’s oesophagus. Gut, 64(1), 49–56.

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