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Potential Molecular Biomarker in Clear Cell Kidney Cancer

By: Susan Reckling
Posted: Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Expression of the tumor-based enhancer of the zeste homolog 2 (EZH2) gene or protein appears to be an independent predictor of prognosis in patients with localized clear cell renal cell carcinoma. The chromatin remodeler EZH2 may play a role in the pathogenesis of this type of cancer, although further studies are needed to include such a molecular biomarker into surveillance guidelines and adjuvant clinical trials. These findings were reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology by Thai Huu Ho, MD, PhD, of the Mayo Clinic, Phoenix, and colleagues.

The association between tumor-based EZH2 gene and protein expression and survival was evaluated in three independent cohorts of clear cell renal cell carcinoma: The Cancer Genome Atlas (n=532), The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center (n=122), and the Mayo Clinic (n=1338). An increased risk of overall mortality was associated with high versus low gene expression of EZH2 in The Cancer Genome Atlas cohort, high versus low EZH2 protein expression in The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center cohort, and high versus low EZH2 protein expression in the Mayo Clinic cohort. In addition, in the Mayo Clinic cohort, high versus low EZH2 protein expression was linked to an increased risk of renal cell carcinoma–specific mortality.