There is significant research interest in developing and validating novel pancreatic cyst-fluid biomarkers given the increasing recognition of the prevalence of pancreatic cysts and their associated malignant potential. Although current international consensus guidelines are helpful, they fail to diagnose with certainty the cyst type and the level of epithelial dysplasia. They also fall short in predicting the future likelihood of malignant transformation. A systematic review was performed with the objective of summarizing cyst-fluid-based biomarkers that have been published in the medical literature over the past 10 years and characterizing the current quality of evidence. Our review demonstrates that there is an increasing interest in this topic with several different and innovative approaches including DNA, RNA, proteomic, and metabolomics profiling. Further techniques to improve upon cytological yield have also been studied. Besides identifying potentially useful clinical biomarkers, these empiric approaches have provided further insight into their pathogenesis. The level of evidence for the vast majority of these studies, however, is limited to retrospective early validation studies. The path forward will be to select out the most promising biomarkers and develop multicenter consortiums capable of capturing adequate sample sizes with appropriate study designs.
View details for DOI 10.1038/ctg.2015.17
View details for PubMedID 26065716