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Bladder cancer biomarker screening based on non-targeted urine metabolomics



Bladder cancer is one of the most common malignancies of the urinary system, and its screening relies heavily on invasive cystoscopy, which increases the risk of urethral injury and infection. This study aims to use non-targeted metabolomics methods to screen for metabolites that are significantly different between the urine of bladder cancer patients and cancer-free controls.


In this study, liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry was used to analyze the urine of bladder cancer patients (n = 57) and the cancer-free controls (n = 38) by non-targeted metabolomic analysis and metabolite identification.


The results showed that there were significant differences in the expression of 27 metabolites between bladder cancer patients and the cancer-free controls.


In the multivariate statistical analysis of this study, the urinary metabolic profile data of bladder cancer patients were analyzed, and the receiver operating characteristic curve analysis showed that it is possible to perform non-invasive clinical diagnoses of bladder cancer through these candidate biomarkers.

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JL and PB are grateful to Zhongshan Hospital Xiamen University, and Xiamen University School of Medicine, for their fellowships. This work was supported by PeiMing Bai from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant no. 21535007).

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Authors and Affiliations



All authors have contributed to the study concept and design. Material preparation, data collection, and analysis are carried out by JL, BC, HX, CZ, and SL. The first draft of the manuscript was written by JL, and PB critically revised the work. All authors have read and approved the final manuscript.

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Correspondence to Peiming Bai.

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All authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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The study design was carried out in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki and was approved by the Ethics Committee of Zhongshan Hospital Affiliated to Xiamen University (XMZSYY-AF-SC-12-03).

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All individuals had given written informed consent to be included in this study before participation.

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Li, J., Cheng, B., Xie, H. et al. Bladder cancer biomarker screening based on non-targeted urine metabolomics. Int Urol Nephrol 54, 23–29 (2022).

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  • Bladder cancer
  • Metabolomics
  • Liquid chromatography
  • Biomarker