Molecular Diagnosis & Therapy

, Volume 22, Issue 4, pp 493–502 | Cite as

Evaluation of Serum Paired MicroRNA Ratios for Differential Diagnosis of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer and Benign Pulmonary Diseases

  • Lihong Fan
  • Jie Sha
  • Junliang Teng
  • Dan Li
  • Changhui Wang
  • Qing Xia
  • Hao Chen
  • Bo SuEmail author
  • Huiwei QiEmail author
Original Research Article


Background and Objective

To clarify whether there are different expressions between lung cancer and benign pulmonary diseases, we studied seven microRNAs (miRNAs) in serum from patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), benign pulmonary nodules and four pulmonary inflammation diseases.


We detected the expression of miRNAs using quantitative reverse transcriptase–polymerase chain reaction (qRT–PCR).


We found that five miRNA ratios—miR-15b-5p/miR-146b-3p, miR-20a-5p/miR-146b-3p, miR-19a-3p/miR-146b-3p, miR-92a-3p/miR-146b-3p, and miR-16-5p/miR-146b-3p—show higher expression in the NSCLC group than the benign pulmonary nodule group, and 13 ratios of miRNAs were significantly upregulated in the NSCLC group compared with the pulmonary inflammation diseases group. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis was performed. For NSCLC and benign pulmonary nodules, the sensitivity and specificity were 0.70 and 0.90, respectively. For NSCLC and pulmonary inflammation diseases, the sensitivity and specificity were 0.81 and 0.71, respectively.


The ratios of miRNAs can be used as potential non-invasive biomarkers for diagnosis of early-stage NSCLC and benign pulmonary diseases.


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

All authors (LF, JS, JT, DL, CW, QX, HC, BS and HQ) declare that they have no conflicts of interest.


This study was funded by the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (no. 20153590) and the Chinese National Natural Science Foundation (nos. 81703847, 81473469).

Ethical Standards

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Respiration Medicine, Shanghai Tenth People’s HospitalTongji University School of MedicineShanghaiChina
  2. 2.Department of Respiration Medicine, Shanghai Tenth People’s HospitalNanjing Medical UniversityNanjingChina
  3. 3.School of Information Management and EngineeringShanghai University of Finance and EconomicsShanghaiChina
  4. 4.Department of Nuclear Medicine, Shanghai Tenth People’s HospitalTongji University School of MedicineShanghaiChina
  5. 5.Central Laboratory, Shanghai Pulmonary HospitalTongji University School of MedicineShanghaiChina
  6. 6.Department of Oncology, Shanghai Pulmonary HospitalTongji University School of MedicineShanghaiChina

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