Background: With the goal of discovering non-invasive biomarkers for early diagnosis of GC, we conducted a case-control study utilising urine samples from individuals with predominantly early GC vs. healthy control (HC).
Methods: Among urine samples from 372 patients, age- and sex-matched 282 patients were randomly divided into three groups: 18 patients in a discovery cohort; 176 patients in a training cohort and 88 patients in a validation cohort.
Results: Among urinary proteins identified in the comprehensive quantitative proteomics analysis, urinary levels of TFF1 (uTFF1) and ADAM12 (uADAM12) were significantly independent diagnostic biomarkers for GC, in addition to Helicobacter pylori status. A urinary biomarker panel combining uTFF1, uADAM12 and H. pylori significantly distinguished between HC and GC patients in both training and validation cohorts. On the analysis for sex-specific biomarkers, this combination panel demonstrated a good AUC of 0.858 for male GC, whereas another combination panel of uTFF1, uBARD1 and H. pylori also provided a good AUC of 0.893 for female GC. Notably, each panel could distinguish even stage I GC patients from HC patients (AUC = 0.850 for males; AUC = 0.845 for females).
Conclusions: Novel urinary protein biomarker panels represent promising non-invasive biomarkers for GC, including early-stage disease.