Serum levels of microRNA-371a-3p are not elevated in testicular tumours of non-germ cell origin.

Serum levels of microRNA-371a-3p (M371) have been shown to be a highly sensitive and specific biomarker for testicular germ cell tumours (TGCT). Little information exists on the expression of this marker in testicular neoplasms deriving from the gonadal stroma or other structures of the gonad. This study presents an expression analysis of the novel TGCT-biomarker M371 in a large cohort of testicular non-germ cell tumours.

The M371 expression was measured by quantitative real time PCR in serum of 99 patients with testicular tumours of non-germ cell origin, thereof 30 patients with malignant testicular lymphomas and 61 patients with gonadal stroma tumours such as Leydig cell tumours, Sertoli cell tumours and 8 cases with miscellaneous benign testicular tumours. Their M371 levels were compared to those of 20 patients with TGCT and to 37 tumour-free male controls.

The median expression levels of benign testicular tumours and testicular lymphoma are close to zero, thus, identical with those of controls and significantly lower than those of TGCT. In summary, this study provides further evidence for the notion that M371 is exclusively expressed by germ cell tumours and not by testicular neoplasms of the non-germ cell subtypes.

Clinically, the test might be of value in preoperative characterization of benign testicular tumours eligible for conservative surgery.

Journal of cancer research and clinical oncology. 2020 Nov 16 [Epub ahead of print]

Gazanfer Belge, Francesca Grobelny, Arlo Radtke, Jacqueline Bodes, Cord Matthies, Christian Wülfing, Klaus-Peter Dieckmann

Faculty of Biology and Chemistry, University of Bremen, Bremen, Germany., Department of Urology, Bundeswehrkrankenhaus Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany., Department of Urology, Asklepios Klinik Altona, Paul-Ehrlich-Str. 1, 22763, Hamburg, Germany., Department of Urology, Asklepios Klinik Altona, Paul-Ehrlich-Str. 1, 22763, Hamburg, Germany. .

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