Background: Ascertaining the nature of biliary strictures is challenging. The role of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in bile in determining the cause of biliary strictures is not known.
Objective: To identify potential VOCs in the headspaces (gas above the sample) of bile in patients with malignant biliary strictures from pancreatic cancer.
Design: Prospective cross-sectional study.
Setting: Referral center.
Patients: Prospective study in which bile was aspirated in 96 patients undergoing ERCP for benign and malignant conditions.
Main outcome measurements: Selected ion flow tube mass spectrometry (VOICE200R SIFT-MS instrument; Syft Technologies Ltd, Christchurch, New Zealand) was used to analyze the headspace and to build a predictive model for pancreatic cancer.
Results: The headspaces from 96 bile samples were analyzed, including 24 from patients with pancreatic cancer and 72 from patients with benign biliary conditions. The concentrations of 6 compounds (acetaldehyde, acetone, benzene, carbon disulfide, pentane, and trimethylamine [TMA]) were increased in patients with pancreatic cancer compared with controls (P < .05). By using receiver-operating characteristic curve analysis, we developed a model for the diagnosis of pancreatic cancer based on the levels of TMA, acetone, isoprene, dimethyl sulfide, and acetaldehyde. The model [10.94 + 1.8229* log (acetaldehyde) + 0.7600* log (acetone) - 1.1746* log (dimethyl sulfide) + 1.0901* log (isoprene) - 2.1401 * log (trimethylamine) ≥ 10] identified the patients with pancreatic cancer (area under the curve = 0.85), with 83.3% sensitivity and 81.9% specificity.
Limitations: Sample size.
Conclusions: The measurement of biliary fluid VOCs may help to distinguish malignant from benign biliary strictures. Further studies are warranted to validate these observations. (Clinical Trial Registration Number NCT01565460.).
Copyright © 2014 American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.