Clinical and Translational Oncology

, Volume 20, Issue 8, pp 1053–1060 | Cite as

Association of urinary and plasma DNA in early breast cancer patients and its links to disease relapse

  • Z. Liu
  • W. LiuEmail author
Research Article



Identifying patients who are at risk of relapse is a key challenge of primary breast cancer. The current study investigates the utility of urinary DNA in breast cancer management and as a predictor of relapse. This work also compares the sensitivity of plasma DNA with urinary DNA.


Blood plasma and urine specimens were collected concurrently from 200 breast cancer patients receiving neoadjuvant chemotherapy. Comparison of both plasma and urinary DNA was performed at baseline to determine assay significance. Serial measurements of urinary DNA were conducted to gauge DNA variations after surgery. Correlations to disease relapse were performed to affirm the clinical utility of urinary DNA.


Molecular analysis showed patients were successfully identified with mutant PIK3CA using urinary DNA. A strong correlation was affirmed from urinary and plasma DNA at baseline with the correlation coefficient r = 0.859. We analyzed post-surgery measurements of urinary DNA for disease-relapse predictions. In subsequent serial followup of urinary DNA samples, we confirmed increased sensitivity in predicting relapse of these patients. The hazard ratio determined at the 9-month was 1.51 that identified patients at greater risk of disease relapse.


Urinary DNA offers a unique opportunity to glimpse upon dynamic changes in early breast cancer. Our results demonstrated good correlation to plasma DNA and post monitoring of cancer patients to identify individuals susceptible to a high risk of relapse. This potentially allows for early intervention such as adjuvant chemotherapy to be administered to better manage these patients.


Breast cancer Urinary DNA Plasma DNA ctDNA Relapse prediction 



This work was supported by research grants provided by Jingzhou First People’s Hospital.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

All authors declare no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All human and animal studies have been approved by the appropriate ethics committee and have, therefore, been performed in accordance with the ethical standards laid down in the 1964 Declaration of Helsinki and its later amendments.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Federación de Sociedades Españolas de Oncología (FESEO) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of OncologyJingzhou First People’s HospitalJingzhouChina
  2. 2.Faculty of MedicineYangtze UniversityJingzhouChina

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