Immunobead RT-PCR versus regular RT-PCR amplification of CEA mRNA in peripheral blood
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- Park, S., Lee, B., Kim, I. et al. J Cancer Res Clin Oncol (2001) 127: 489. doi:10.1007/s004320100239
Purpose: The reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) amplification of tumor-specific mRNA has been used for the detection of cancer cells in peripheral blood. More recently, an immunomagnetic isolation and reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (immunobead RT-PCR) was developed which has reportedly significant advantages over the previous RT-PCR analysis. In our study, we compared these two methods using a model set of peripheral blood containing tumor cells under standardized conditions. Material and methods: In order to compare the false positive rate, normal peripheral blood samples from five volunteers were analyzed by both methods. A model set of peripheral blood containing tumor cells was established by adding SNUC4 human colon cancer cells to peripheral blood collected from normal volunteers not showing any nonspecific bands upon electrophoresis of the PCR products. RT-PCR amplification of carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) mRNA was done with total RNA and mRNA prepared from this model sample. In immunobead RT-PCR analysis, mRNA was prepared from the cells isolated with anti-CEA antibody-coated magnetic beads or anti-Ber-EP4 antibody-coated magnetic beads before the RT-PCR analysis. Result: The immunobead RT-PCR yielded no non-specific band, while the regular RT-PCR using total RNA did show non-specific band formation in all five samples. When mRNA rather than total RNA was used, nonspecific bands were formed in three of the five samples. Immunobead RT-PCR allowed the detection of 101 tumor cells in 1 ml of peripheral blood. The regular RT-PCR analysis had a detection limit of 102 tumor cells in 1 ml of peripheral blood. Conclusion: The immunobead RT-PCR proved to be more sensitive and specific than the regular RT-PCR at least in our model system.
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