Identification Of Carbonic Anhydrase IX As A Novel Target For Endoscopic Molecular Imaging Of Human Bladder Cancer
Published 2018 · Medicine, Biology
Background/Aims: Emerging novel optical imaging techniques with cancer-specific molecular imaging agents offer a powerful and promising platform for cancer detection and resection. White-light cystoscopy and random bladder biopsies remain the most appropriate but nonetheless suboptimal diagnostic technique for bladder cancer, which is associated with high morbidity and recurrence. However, white-light cystoscopy has intrinsic shortcomings. Although current optical imaging technologies hold great potential for improved diagnostic accuracy, there are few imaging agents for specific molecular targeting. Carbonic anhydrase IX (CAIX) plays a pivotal role in tumorigenesis and tumor progression with potential value as an imaging target. Here, we investigated the feasibility of CAIX as a target and validated the diagnostic performance and significance of CAIX as an imaging agent. Methods: We first analyzed the data from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA). Pairs of samples comprising bladder cancer and adjacent normal tissue were collected. All tissue samples were used for real-time PCR and immunohistochemistry to compare CAIX expression in normal and cancer tissue. Using blue-light cystoscopy, we observed the optical distribution of fluorescently labeled CAIX antibody in freshly excised human bladders and obtained random bladder biopsies to assess sensitivity and specificity. Results: The TCGA data revealed that CAIX expression was significantly higher in bladder cancer specimens than in normal tissue. The outcome was similar in quantitative real-time PCR analysis. In immunohistochemical analysis, bladder cancer specimens classified in four pathological subtypes presented a variety of positive staining intensities, whereas no benign specimens showed CAIX staining. Using blue-light cystoscopy, we distinguished bladder cancers that were mainly papillary, some variants of urothelial carcinoma, and less carcinoma in situ, from benign tissue, despite the presence of suspicious-appearing mucosa. The sensitivity and specificity for CAIX-targeted imaging were 88.00% and 93.75%, respectively. Conclusions: CAIX-targeted molecular imaging could be a feasible and adaptive alternative approach for the accurate diagnosis and complete resection of bladder cancer.