Urinary aquaporin 1 and perilipin 2: Can these novel markers accurately characterize small renal masses and help guide patient management?

To evaluate the role of urine aquaporin 1 and perilipin 2 as biomarkers adjunct to renal mass biopsy in guiding the management of patients with small renal masses.

Preoperative aquaporin 1 and perilipin 2 levels in 57 patients with small renal masses undergoing partial nephrectomy were analyzed and compared with postoperative tumor histology. An algorithm was created utilizing aquaporin 1 and perilipin 2 in conjunction with renal mass biopsy. Cut-off values were implemented to maximize biomarker sensitivity and specificity. Renal mass biopsy utilization and intervention were then compared with rates in traditional renal mass biopsy algorithms.

All clear cell and papillary renal cell carcinomas were correctly identified and assigned to the treatment path. All benign lesions were correctly sorted to a confirmatory renal mass biopsy path. Two chromophobe masses did not have elevated aquaporin 1 and perilipin 2, and would require renal mass biopsy. Compared with protocols that call for all small renal masses to be biopsied, confirmatory renal mass biopsy could have been safely avoided in 74% of patients with elevated aquaporin 1 and perilipin 2. Compared with protocols that do not utilize renal mass biopsy, surgical intervention would have been avoided in 23% of patients with benign masses.

Aquaporin 1 and perilipin 2 possess high sensitivity and specificity for detecting clear cell and papillary renal cell carcinoma. Use of these markers might compliment renal mass biopsy in the characterization of small renal masses.

International journal of urology : official journal of the Japanese Urological Association. 2018 Nov 22 [Epub ahead of print]

Joseph B Song, Jeremiah J Morrissey, Jonathan M Mobley, Karen G Figenshau, Joel M Vetter, Sam B Bhayani, Evan D Kharasch, Robert Sherburne Figenshau

Division of Urology, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, St. Louis, Missouri,, USA., Department of Anesthesiology, Division of Clinical and Translational Research, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, St. Louis, Missouri,, USA.