Peripheral neuropathy from paclitaxel: Risk prediction by serum microRNAs

Shoko Noda-Narita, Akihiko Shimomura, Yuko Tanabe, Jumpei Kawauchi, Juntaro Matsuzaki, Satoko Takizawa, Yoshiaki Aoki, Chikako Shimizu, Kenji Tamura, Takahiro Ochiya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have recently been reported as useful diagnostic markers in cancer; however, relationships of miRNAs with adverse events during chemotherapy have yet to be fully described. In this study, we examined the relationship between serum miRNA and the risk of peripheral neuropathy (PN), a common and persistent adverse event induced by paclitaxel, in patients with breast cancer. Methods: A total of 84 serum samples from patients with breast cancer, who received paclitaxel as neoadjuvant or adjuvant chemotherapy, were obtained between January 2011 and September 2013 at National Cancer Center Hospital. Samples were divided, 2:1, into a training cohort and a test cohort, respectively; both cohorts included specimens from patients with severe PN (≥grade 2, PN group) and non-severe PN controls (non-PN group). The training cohort was used to identify miRNAs, and combinations thereof, that could predict PN, which then were validated in the test cohort. Results: Eighty-four patients received paclitaxel: 38 and 46 patients in the PN and non-PN groups, respectively. We identified 15 discriminatory miRNAs with |fold change|>0.5, and 14 combinations of three miRNAs showed the ability to discriminate, with sensitivity, specificity and accuracy of >50%. The most discriminatory miRNA, with the highest |fold change|, was miR-451a, which regulates the expression of the drug-transporter protein P-glycoprotein, potentially promoting paclitaxel resistance. Conclusion: MiR-451a could be a predictive marker for PN caused by paclitaxel-containing chemotherapy; however, further investigation of the underlying mechanism is required to determine the role of miR-451a.

Original languageEnglish
JournalBMJ Supportive and Palliative Care
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • and breast cancer
  • miR-451a
  • paclitaxel
  • peripheral neuropathy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Oncology(nursing)
  • Medical–Surgical


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