Background: The incidence of lung adenocarcinoma (LUAD) is increasing worldwide with different prognosis even in early-stage patients. We aimed to identify a prognostic panel with multiple DNA methylation biomarkers to predict survival in early-stage LUAD patients of different racial groups. Methods: The methylation array, pyrosequencing methylation assay, Cox regression and Kaplan-Meier analyses were conducted to build the risk score equations of selected probes in a training cohort of 69 Asian LUAD patients. The risk score model was verified in another cohort of 299 Caucasian LUAD patients in The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) database. Results: We performed a Cox regression analysis, in which the regression coefficients were obtained for eight probes corresponding to eight genes (AGTRL1, ALDH1A3, BDKRB1, CTSE, EFNA2, NFAM1, SEMA4A and TMEM129). The risk score was derived from sum of each methylated probes multiplied by its corresponding coefficient. Patients with the risk score greater than the median value showed poorer overall survival compared with other patients (p = 0.007). Such a risk score significantly predicted patients showing poor survival in TCGA cohort (p = 0.036). A multivariate analysis was further performed to demonstrate that the eight-probe panel association with poor outcome in early-stage LUAD patients remained significant even after adjusting for different clinical variables including staging parameters (hazard ratio, 2.03; p = 0.039). Conclusions: We established a proof-of-concept prognostic panel consisting of eight-probe signature to predict survival of early-stage LUAD patients of Asian and Caucasian populations.
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