A systematic review of metabolomic profiling of gastric cancer and esophageal cancer

Sha Huang, Yang Guo, Zhexuan Li, et al.


Objective: Upper gastrointestinal (UGI) cancers, predominantly gastric cancer (GC) and esophageal cancer (EC), are malignanttumor types with high morbidity and mortality rates. Accumulating studies have focused on metabolomic profiling of UGI cancers inrecent years. In this systematic review, we have provided a collective summary of previous findings on metabolites and metabolomicprofiling associated with GC and EC.

Methods: A systematic search of three databases (Embase, PubMed, and Web of Science) for molecular epidemiologic studies onthe metabolomic profiles of GC and EC was conducted. The Newcastle–Ottawa Scale (NOS) was used to assess the quality of theincluded articles.

Results: A total of 52 original studies were included for review. A number of metabolites were differentially distributed between GCand EC cases and non-cases, including those involved in glycolysis, anaerobic respiration, tricarboxylic acid cycle, and protein andlipid metabolism. Lactic acid, glucose, citrate, and fumaric acid were among the most frequently reported metabolites of cellularrespiration while glutamine, glutamate, and valine were among the most commonly reported amino acids. The lipid metabolitesidentified previously included saturated and unsaturated free fatty acids, aldehydes, and ketones. However, the key findings acrossstudies to date have been inconsistent, potentially due to limited sample sizes and the majority being hospital-based case-controlanalyses lacking an independent replication group.

Conclusions: Studies on metabolomics have thus far provided insights into etiological factors and biomarkers for UGI cancers,supporting the potential of applying metabolomic profiling in cancer prevention and management efforts.

Cite this article as: Huang S, Guo Y, Li Z, Zhang Y, Zhou T, You W, et al.A systematic review of metabolomic profiling of human gastric cancer andesophageal cancer. Cancer Biol Med. 2020; 17: 181-198. doi: 10.20892/j.issn.2095-3941.2019.0348


Gastric cancer; esophageal cancer; metabolomics; Warburg effect; biomarkers

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