Serum mesothelin, osteopontin and vimentin: useful markers for clinical monitoring of malignant pleural mesothelioma.

International Journal of Biological Markers 2016 September 14 [Epub ahead of print] [Link]

Bonotti A, Simonini S, Pantani E, Giusti L, Donadio E, Mazzoni MR, Chella A, Marconi L, Ambrosino N, Lucchi M, Mussi A, Cristaudo A, Foddis R


Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a relatively rare tumor, with the epithelioid type occurring more frequently. Several biomarkers have been suggested for screening and early diagnosis of MPM. Currently, high levels of soluble mesothelin-related peptides (SMRP), plasma osteopontin (pOPN) and vimentin have been reported in patients with MPM as promising markers for diagnosis, but their clinical use in monitoring is still discussed. The aim of our study was to evaluate the usefulness of these substances as markers of the clinical response to treatment in patients suffering from epithelioid mesothelioma.
219 serum samples from 56 patients were collected during follow-up and the clinical response to therapy was recorded. Percentage differences between 2 consecutive measurements of SMRP, osteopontin and vimentin (Δ markers) by means of commercially available kits were correlated with changes in the clinical course.
Δ SMRP, Δ pOPN and Δ vimentin showed statistically significant differences between the disease categories stable disease, partial response and disease progression (p = 0.0001, p = 0.035 and p = 0.0025 for SMRP, pOPN and vimentin, respectively). Moreover, contingency table analysis showed statistically significant differences between clinical response and Δ of each marker clustered into 3 groups (<-20%, between -20% and +20%, >+20%).
The time course of Δ SMRP and Δ vimentin was strongly associated with disease status, and so was the time course of pOPN, albeit to a lesser extent. These markers appear to be particularly effective in cases of partial response and disease progression, while their possible use in stable disease should be better investigated.