AIM: To design and validate a multiparametric platform that allows the simultaneous detection of multiple immunohistochemical markers for CRC, by combining different positive or negative indicators, with the aim of developing a diagnostic/prognostic tool more specific, than those currently available.
Based on the results obtained from a statistically significant number of patients, the final goal is to develop an image analysis software that employs the analysis of multiple tumor-associated markers, which might be used to design “specific maps” for CRC (and other solid tumors) early diagnosis, staging and prognosis, also taking into account the individual variability of each patient. This kind of multi-parameter approach could represent a high-performance technological tool useful for designing personalized therapies, optimizing the treatment protocols of clinical studies and improving the therapeutic efficacy of drugs targeting innovative tumor-associated markers.
In particular, our multiparametric platform will include molecular components of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling, that has a key role in CRC development and progression, and the CD44, used as a multifunctional indicator for advanced stages of CRC and the metastatic disease. These biomarkers could be also related to serological markers already in use in diagnostic practice.
Nowadays, each existing biomarker used or proposed for CRC early diagnosis, staging and prognosis alone is poorly specific and the absolute positive and negative serological and/or immunohistochemical markers are still lacking. We have recently demonstrated (Serafino et al, 2014, Oncotarget, 5:978) that some crucial components of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway, when evaluated by immunohistochemistry using a multiparametric approach that includes the analysis of both expression and localization, could be potent markers for diagnosis, prevention and therapy in inflammatory bowel diseases (Chron’s disease or ulcerative rectocolitis) and sporadic colorectal cancer.
Innovation of the technology:
- The proposed biomarkers, even if recognized as crucial for the development and metastatization of many tumors by the international scientific community, are not yet used in diagnostic/prognostic tools or predictive of the therapeutic response
- The multiparametric approach is currently used in diagnostic exclusively for evaluating molecular but not immunohistochemical parameters
Main competitive advantages of the technology:
- The techology is based on histological diagnosis and molecular localization that is sustainable from a cost point of view and applicable to the majority of diagnostic and health care sites both public and private
- It strongly takes into account the individual variability of each patient, and is in line with personalized and precision Medicine