Early detection of cancer using biomarkers obtained from blood or other easily accessible tissues would have a significant impact on reducing cancer mortality. However, identifying new blood-based biomarkers has been hindered by the dynamic complexity of the human plasma proteome, confounded by genetic and environmental variability, and the scarcity of high quality controlled samples. In this report we discuss a new paradigm for biomarker discovery through the use of mouse models. Inbred mouse models of cancer recapitulate many critical features of human cancer, while eliminating sources of environmental and genetic variability. The ability to collect samples from highly matched cases and controls under identical conditions further reduces variability which is critical for successful biomarker discovery. We describe the establishment of a repository containing tumor, plasma, urine, and other tissues from ten different mouse models of human cancer, including two breast, two lung, two prostate, two gastro-intestinal, one ovarian, and one skin tumor model. We present the overall design of this resource and its potential use by the research community for biomarker discovery.
MYC-induced DNA damage is exacerbated in WRN deficient cells, leading to replication stress and accelerated cellular senescence. To determine if WRN deficiency impairs MYC driven tumor development, we utilized both xenograft and autochthonous tumor models. Conditional silencing of WRN expression in c-MYC overexpressing non-small cell lung cancer xenografts impaired both tumor establishment and tumor growth. This inhibitory effect of WRN knock-down was accompanied by increased DNA damage, decreased proliferation, and tumor necrosis. In the Eμ-Myc mouse model of B-cell lymphoma, a germline mutation in the helicase domain of Wrn (WrnΔhel/Δhel) resulted in a significant delay in emergence of lethal lymphomas, extending tumor free survival by >30%. Analysis of pre-neoplastic B cells from Eμ-Myc Wrn mutant mice revealed increased DNA damage, elevation of senescence markers, and decreased proliferation in comparison with cells from age-matched Eμ-Myc mice. Immunohistochemical and global gene expression analysis of overt Eμ-Myc WrnΔhel/Δhel lymphomas demonstrated a marked increase in expression of the CDK inhibitor, p16Ink4a, as well as elevation of TAp63, a known mediator of senescence. Collectively, these studies demonstrate that in the context of Myc-associated tumorigenesis, loss of Wrn amplifies the DNA damage response, both in pre-neoplastic and neoplastic tissue, engaging activation of tumor suppressor pathways. This leads to inhibition of tumor growth and prolonged tumor free survival. Targeting WRN or its enzymatic function could prove to be an effective strategy in the treatment of MYC-associated cancers.
Werner helicase; therapeutic target; Myc-driven cancer; senescence; tumor suppressors
Cell survival after DNA damage relies on DNA repair, the abrogation of which causes genomic instability. The DNA repair protein RAD51 and the trans-lesion synthesis DNA polymerase REV1 are required for resistance to DNA interstrand crosslinking agents such as cisplatin. In this study, we show that overexpression of miR-96 in human cancer cells reduces the levels of RAD51 and REV1 and impacts the cellular response to agents that cause DNA damage. miR-96 directly targeted the coding region of RAD51 and the 3′-untranslated region of REV1. Overexpression of miR-96 decreased the efficiency of homologous recombination and enhanced sensitivity to the poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) inhibitor AZD2281 in vitro and to cisplatin both in vitro and in vivo. Taken together, our findings indicate that miR-96 regulates DNA repair and chemosensitivity by repressing RAD51 and REV1. As a candidate therapeutic, miR-96 may improve chemotherapeutic efficacy by increasing the sensitivity of cancer cells to DNA damage.
miR-96; DNA repair; drug resistance; cisplatin; PARP inhibitor
Tumor development relies upon essential contributions from the tumor microenvironment and host immune alterations. These contributions may inform the plasma proteome in a manner that could be exploited for cancer diagnosis and prognosis. In this study, we employed a systems biology approach to characterize the plasma proteome response in the inducible HER2/neu mouse model of breast cancer during tumor induction, progression and regression. Mass spectrometry data derived from ∼ 1.6 million spectra identified protein networks involved in wound healing, microenvironment and metabolism that coordinately changed during tumor development. The observed alterations developed prior to cancer detection, increased progressively with tumor growth, and reverted toward baseline with tumor regression. Gene expression and immunohistochemical analyses suggested that the cancer-associated plasma proteome was derived from transcriptional responses in the non-cancerous host tissues as well as the developing tumor. The proteomic signature was distinct from a non-specific response to inflammation. Overall, the developing tumor simultaneously engaged a number of innate physiological processes, including wound repair, immune response, coagulation and complement cascades, tissue remodeling and metabolic homeostasis that were all detectable in plasma. Our findings offer an integrated view of tumor development with relevance to plasma-based strategies to detect and diagnose cancer.
Previous studies have shown that administration of the fatty acids, linoleic and oleic acid, either by intragastric or intraintestinal infusion, suppresses food intake and body weight in rats. While still not fully understood, gut-mediated satiety mechanisms likely are potential effectors of this robust response to gastrointestinal fatty acid infusions. The objective of this study was to assess the effects of voluntary access to an oleic acid derivative, ethyl oleate (EO), on subsequent food intake and body weight in rats. Animals were randomized either to a 12.5% EO diet or a soybean oil diet as a “breakfast,” followed either by two one-hour or one five-hour access periods to standard rodent diet, and food intake and body weights were collected. Across 14 days access, rats consuming EO on both feeding schedules gained less weight and consumed less total kilocalories than rats consuming the SO diet. Further, plasma levels of glucose and insulin were comparable in both EO and SO diet groups. In summary, EO was found to increase weight loss in rats maintained on a 75% food-restriction regimen, and attenuate weight-gain upon resumption of an ad-libitum feeding regimen. These data indicate that voluntary access to EO promoted short-term satiety, compared to SO diet, and that these effects contributed to a important and novel attenuated weight gain in EO-fed animals.
Linoleic Acid; Obesity; Oleic Acid; Ethyl Oleate; Satiety; Triglyceride
The mechanisms underlying the effects of long-term deep brain stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus (STN DBS) as a therapy for Parkinson’s disease (PD) remain poorly understood. The present study examined whether functionally effective, long-term STN DBS modulates glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) and/or brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in both unlesioned and unilateral 6-hydroxydopamine lesioned rats. Lesioned rats that received two weeks of continuous unilateral STN DBS exhibited significant improvements in parkinsonian motor behaviors in tests of forelimb akinesia and rearing activity. Unilateral STN DBS did not increase GDNF in the nigrostriatal system, primary motor cortex (M1), or hippocampus of unlesioned rats. In contrast, unilateral STN DBS increased BDNF protein 2–3 fold bilaterally in the nigrostriatal system with the location (substantia nigra vs. striatum) dependent upon lesion status. Further, BDNF protein was bilaterally increased in M1 cortex by as much as 2 fold regardless of lesion status. STN DBS did not impact cortical regions that receive less input from the STN. STN DBS also was associated with bilateral increases in BDNF mRNA in the substantia nigra (SN) and internal globus pallidus (GPi). The increase observed in GPi was completely blocked by pretreatment with 5-Methyl-10,11-dihydro-5 H-dibenzo[a,d]cyclohepten-5,10-imine (MK-801), suggesting that the activation of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors was involved in this phenomenon. The upregulation of BDNF associated with long term STN DBS suggest that this therapy may exert pronounced and underappreciated effects on plasticity in the basal ganglia circuitry that may play a role in the symptomatic effects of this therapy as well as support the neuroprotective effect of stimulation documented in this rat model.
Deep brain stimulation; Parkinson’s disease; basal ganglia; trophic factors
Due to their easy accessibility, proteins outside of the plasma membrane represent an ideal but untapped resource for potential drug targets or disease biomarkers. They constitute the major biochemical class of current therapeutic targets and clinical biomarkers. Recent advances in proteomic technologies have fueled interest in analysis of extracellular proteins such as membrane proteins, cell surface proteins, and secreted proteins. However, unlike the gene expression analyses from a variety of tissues and cells using genomic technologies, quantitative proteomic analysis of proteins from various biological sources is challenging due to the high complexity of different proteomes, and the lack of robust and consistent methods for analyses of different tissue sources, especially for specific enrichment of extracellular proteins. Since most extracellular proteins are modified by oligosaccharides, the population of glycoproteins therefore represents the majority of extracellular proteomes. Here, we quantitatively analyzed glycoproteins and determined the expression patterns of extracellular proteins from 12 mouse tissues using solid-phase extraction of N-linked glycopeptides and liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry. We identified peptides enclosing 1231 possible N-linked glycosites from 826 unique proteins. We further determined the expression pattern of formerly N-linked glycopeptides and identified extracellular glycoproteins specifically expressed in each tissue. Furthermore, the tissue specificities of the overexpressed glycoproteins in a mouse skin tumor model were determined by comparing to the quantitative protein expression from the different tissues. These skin tumor-specific extracellular proteins might serve as potential candidates for cell surface drug targets or disease-specific protein markers.
Extracellular proteins; glycosylation; solid-phase extraction of glycopeptides; tissue specificity; different tissues; skin tumor; proteomics; and mass spectrometry
Plasma has been the focus of testing different proteomic technologies for the identification of biomarkers due to its ready accessibility. However, it is not clear if direct proteomic analysis of plasma can be used to discover new marker proteins from tumor that are associated with tumor progression. Here, we reported that such proteins can be detected in plasma in a chemical induced skin cancer mouse model. We analyzed glycoproteins from both benign papillomas and malignant carcinomas from mice using our recently developed platform, solid-phase extraction of glycopeptides (SPEG) and mass spectrometry, and identified 463 unique N-linked glycosites from 318 unique glycoproteins. These include most known extracellular proteins that have been reported to play roles in skin cancer development such as thrombospondin, cathepsins, epidermal growth factor receptor, cell adhesion molecules, cadherins, integrins, tuberin, fibulin, TGFβ receptor, etc. We further investigated whether these tumor proteins could be detected in plasma from tumor bearing mice using isotope labeling and 2D-LC-MALDI-MS/MS. Two tumor glycoproteins, Tenascin-C and Arylsulfatase B, were identified and quantified successfully in plasma from tumor bearing mice. This result indicates that analysis of tumor associated proteins in tumors and plasma by method using glycopeptide capture, isotopic labeling, and mass spectrometry can be used as a discovery tool to identify candidate tumor proteins that may be detected in plasma.
Formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissues have been used to discover disease-associated protein changes using mass spectrometry. Protein post-translational modifications such as glycosylation are known to associate with disease development. In this study, we investigated whether FFPE tissues preserve such modifications and therefore can be used as specimen of choice to identify the disease-associated modifications. We isolated the glycopeptides from the tryptic digest of frozen and FFPE lung tissues using solid-phase extraction of glycopeptides and analyzed them using mass spectrometry. The glycopeptides identified from FFPE lung tissue were compared to the ones from frozen lung tissue regarding their relative abundance, unique glycosylation sites, and subcellular locations. The results from our study confirmed that glycosylation in FFPE tissues are preserved and FFPE tissues can be used for discovery of new disease associated changes in protein modifications. Furthermore, we demonstrated the feasibility of applying the strategy of glycopeptide isolation from tryptic peptides of FFPE tissue to other tissues such as liver and heart.
N-glycosylation; FFPE tissue; protein post-translational modifications; quantitative analysis
The cyclin-dependent kinase (Cdk) inhibitor p27Kip1 (p27) is a marker of prognosis in many cancers, including breast cancer. Low p27 expression correlates with poor prognosis, especially in hormone receptor positive breast tumors. This association suggests a role for p27 in hormone-dependent cancer. We used the Wnt-1 transgenic mouse model to further explore the role of p27 in hormone-driven breast cancer. We found that p27 deficiency did not alter breast cancer rate in either male or female Wnt-1 mice. However, we did find p27−/− females had reduced levels of serum progesterone (P) and increased variability in estradiol (E), which could have affected their cancer susceptibility. To equalize hormone levels, an additional cohort of Wnt-1 female mice was ovariectomized and implanted with slow release pellets of E and P. Although this treatment did not alter the breast cancer rate, it did accelerate the development of pituitary and gastric tumors in p27−/− mice. This study shows that while not a significant inhibitor of Wnt-1-driven breast cancer, p27 inhibits gastric tumors, whose latency is modulated by sex steroids.
A proof-of-concept demonstration of the use of label-free quantitative glycoproteomics for biomarker discovery workflow is presented here, using a mouse model for skin cancer as an example. Blood plasma was collected from 10 control mice, and 10 mice having a mutation in the p19ARF gene, conferring them high propensity to develop skin cancer after carcinogen exposure. We enriched for N-glycosylated plasma proteins, ultimately generating deglycosylated forms of the modified tryptic peptides for liquid chromatography mass spectrometry (LC-MS) analyses. LC-MS runs for each sample were then performed with a view to identifying proteins that were differentially abundant between the two mouse populations. We then used a recently developed computational framework, Corra, to perform peak picking and alignment, and to compute the statistical significance of any observed changes in individual peptide abundances. Once determined, the most discriminating peptide features were then fragmented and identified by tandem mass spectrometry with the use of inclusion lists. We next assessed the identified proteins to see if there were sets of proteins indicative of specific biological processes that correlate with the presence of disease, and specifically cancer, according to their functional annotations. As expected for such sick animals, many of the proteins identified were related to host immune response. However, a significant number of proteins also directly associated with processes linked to cancer development, including proteins related to the cell cycle, localisation, trasport, and cell death. Additional analysis of the same samples in profiling mode, and in triplicate, confirmed that replicate MS analysis of the same plasma sample generated less variation than that observed between plasma samples from different individuals, demonstrating that the reproducibility of the LC-MS platform was sufficient for this application. These results thus show that an LC-MS-based workflow can be a useful tool for the generation of candidate proteins of interest as part of a disease biomarker discovery effort.
Skin cancer; LC-MS; Label-free protein quantification; Biomarker discovery; Systems biology; Targeted peptide sequencing; Glycoproteomics; Plasma
Insulin signaling can be modulated by several isoforms of PKC in peripheral tissues. Here, we assessed whether one specific isoform, PKC-θ, was expressed in critical CNS regions that regulate energy balance and whether it mediated the deleterious effects of diets high in fat, specifically palmitic acid, on hypothalamic insulin activity in rats and mice. Using a combination of in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry, we found that PKC-θ was expressed in discrete neuronal populations of the arcuate nucleus, specifically the neuropeptide Y/agouti-related protein neurons and the dorsal medial nucleus in the hypothalamus. CNS exposure to palmitic acid via direct infusion or by oral gavage increased the localization of PKC-θ to cell membranes in the hypothalamus, which was associated with impaired hypothalamic insulin and leptin signaling. This finding was specific for palmitic acid, as the monounsaturated fatty acid, oleic acid, neither increased membrane localization of PKC-θ nor induced insulin resistance. Finally, arcuate-specific knockdown of PKC-θ attenuated diet-induced obesity and improved insulin signaling. These results suggest that many of the deleterious effects of high-fat diets, specifically those enriched with palmitic acid, are CNS mediated via PKC-θ activation, resulting in reduced insulin activity.
TRAIL is a promising candidate for cancer therapy, as it can induce apoptosis specifically in tumor cells but not in normal cells. While earlier mouse tumor studies revealed a strong tissue dependency of TRAIL and its death receptor in suppressing primary tumorigenesis or experimental metastases, we recently found that TRAIL-R inhibits lymph node metastases without affecting primary tumor formation in a mouse model of multistage skin tumorigenesis. This finding uncouples the role of TRAIL in primary tumorigenesis from metastasis formation, likely by sensitization of previously TRAIL-resistant tumor cells upon detachment, an early step required for metastasis formation. Therefore, TRAIL-R is a novel metastasis suppressor, suggesting that TRAIL-related tumor therapy might be most effective in primary tumors and early metastatic cancers, before selection for TRAIL resistance occurs.
Oncogenes can induce p53 through a signaling pathway involving p19/Arf. It was recently proposed that oncogenes can also induce DNA damage and this can induce p53 through the Atm DNA damage pathway. To assess the relative roles of Atm, Arf, and p53 in suppression of Ras- driven tumors we examined susceptibility to skin carcinogenesis in DMBA/TPA treated Atm and p53 deficient mice and compared these results to previous studies on Arf deficient mice. Mice with epidermal specific deletion of p53 showed increased papilloma number and progression to malignant invasive carcinomas compared to wild type littermates. In contrast, Atm deficient mice showed no increase in papilloma number, growth, or malignant progression. γ-H2AX and p53 levels were increased in both Atm+/+ and Atm−/− papillomas, while Arf−/− papillomas showed much lower p53 expression. Thus although there is evidence of DNA damage, signaling through Arf appears to regulate p53 in these Ras-driven tumors. In spontaneous and radiation induced lymphoma models, tumor latency was accelerated in Atm−/−p53−/− compound mutant mice compared to the single mutant Atm−/− or p53−/− mice, indicating cooperation between loss of Atm and loss of p53. Although p53 mediated apoptosis was impaired in irradiated Atm−/− lymphocytes, p53 loss was still selected for during lymphomagenesis in Atm−/− mice. In conclusion, in these models of oncogene or DNA damage induced tumors, p53 retains tumor suppressor activity in the absence of Atm.
Squamous cell carcinoma; Trp53; DNA damage; Hras; apoptosis
p27kip1 is a cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor and a tumor suppressor. In some tumors, p27 suppresses tumor growth by inhibition of cell proliferation. However, this is not universally observed, implying additional mechanisms of tumor suppression by p27. p27-deficient mice are particularly susceptibility to genotoxin-induced tumors, suggesting a role for p27 in the DNA damage response. To test this hypothesis, we measured genotoxin-induced mutations and chromosome damage in p27-deficient mice. Both p27+/− and p27−/− mice displayed a higher N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea-induced mutation frequency in the colon than p27+/+ littermates. Furthermore, cells from irradiated p27-deficient mice exhibited a higher number of chromatid breaks and showed modestly increased micronucleus formation compared to cells from wild-type littermates. To determine if this mutator phenotype was related to the cell cycle-inhibitory function of p27, we measured cell cycle arrest in response to DNA damage. Both normal and tumor cells from p27-deficient mice showed impaired G2/M arrest following low doses of ionizing radiation. Thus, p27 may inhibit tumor development through two mechanisms. The first is by reducing the proliferation of cells that have already sustained an oncogenic lesion. The second is by transient inhibition of cell cycle progression following genotoxic insult, thereby minimizing chromosome damage and fixation of mutations.
TRAIL is a promising anticancer agent due to its ability to selectively induce apoptosis in established tumor cell lines but not nontransformed cells. Herein, we demonstrate a role for the apoptosis-inducing TRAIL receptor (TRAIL-R) as a metastasis suppressor. Although mouse models employing tumor transplantation have shown that TRAIL can reduce tumor growth, autochthonous tumor models have generated conflicting results with respect to the physiological role of the TRAIL system during tumorigenesis. We used a multistage model of squamous cell carcinoma to examine the role of TRAIL-R throughout all steps of tumor development. DMBA/TPA-treated TRAIL-R–deficient mice showed neither an increase in number or growth rate of benign papillomas nor an increase in the rate of progression to squamous cell carcinoma. However, metastasis to lymph nodes was significantly enhanced, indicating a role for TRAIL-R specifically in the suppression of metastasis. We also found that adherent TRAIL-R–expressing skin carcinoma cells were TRAIL resistant in vitro but were sensitized to TRAIL upon detachment by inactivation of the ERK signaling pathway. As detachment from the primary tumor is an obligatory step in metastasis, this provides a possible mechanism by which TRAIL-R could inhibit metastasis. Hence, treatment of cancer patients with agonists of the apoptosis-inducing receptors for TRAIL may prove useful in reducing the incidence of metastasis.
Ectopic expression of oncogenes such as Ras induces expression of p19Arf, which, in turn, activates p53 and growth arrest. Here, we used a multistage model of squamous cell carcinoma development to investigate the functional interactions between Ras, p19Arf, and p53 during tumor progression in the mouse. Skin tumors were induced in wild-type, p19Arf-deficient, and p53-deficient mice using the DMBA/TPA two-step protocol. Activating mutations in Hras were detected in all papillomas and carcinomas examined, regardless of genotype. Relative to wild-type mice, the growth rate of papillomas was greater in p19Arf-deficient mice, and reduced in p53-deficient mice. Malignant conversion of papillomas to squamous cell carcinomas, as well as metastasis to lymph nodes and lungs, was markedly accelerated in both p19 Arf- and p53-deficient mice. Thus, p19Arf inhibits the growth rate of tumors in a p53-independent manner. Through its regulation of p53, p19Arf also suppresses malignant conversion and metastasis. p53 expression was upregulated in papillomas from wild-type but not p19 Arf-null mice, and p53 mutations were more frequently seen in wild-type than in p19 Arf-null carcinomas. This indicates that selection for p53 mutations is a direct result of signaling from the initiating oncogenic lesion, Hras, acting through p19Arf.
A squamous cell carcinoma model shows Ras mutation not only initiates tumor development but, through Arf and p53, directly influences the subsequent evolutionary trajectory of the tumors
CTCF is a highly conserved, multifunctional zinc finger protein involved in critical aspects of gene regulation including transcription regulation, chromatin insulation, genomic imprinting, X-chromosome inactivation, and higher order chromatin organization. Such multifunctional properties of CTCF suggest an essential role in development. Indeed, a previous report on maternal depletion of CTCF suggested that CTCF is essential for pre-implantation development. To distinguish between the effects of maternal and zygotic expression of CTCF, we studied pre-implantation development in mice harboring a complete loss of function Ctcf knockout allele. Although we demonstrated that homozygous deletion of Ctcf is early embryonically lethal, in contrast to previous observations, we showed that the Ctcf nullizygous embryos developed up to the blastocyst stage (E3.5) followed by peri-implantation lethality (E4.5–E5.5). Moreover, one-cell stage Ctcf nullizygous embryos cultured ex vivo developed to the 16–32 cell stage with no obvious abnormalities. Using a single embryo assay that allowed both genotype and mRNA expression analyses of the same embryo, we demonstrated that pre-implantation development of the Ctcf nullizygous embryos was associated with the retention of the maternal wild type Ctcf mRNA. Loss of this stable maternal transcript was temporally associated with loss of CTCF protein expression, apoptosis of the developing embryo, and failure to further develop an inner cell mass and trophoectoderm ex vivo. This indicates that CTCF expression is critical to early embryogenesis and loss of its expression rapidly leads to apoptosis at a very early developmental stage. This is the first study documenting the presence of the stable maternal Ctcf transcript in the blastocyst stage embryos. Furthermore, in the presence of maternal CTCF, zygotic CTCF expression does not seem to be required for pre-implantation development.
We generated extensive transcriptional and proteomic profiles from a Her2-driven mouse model of breast cancer that closely recapitulates human breast cancer. This report makes these data publicly available in raw and processed forms, as a resource to the community. Importantly, we previously made biospecimens from this same mouse model freely available through a sample repository, so researchers can obtain samples to test biological hypotheses without the need of breeding animals and collecting biospecimens.
Twelve datasets are available, encompassing 841 LC-MS/MS experiments (plasma and tissues) and 255 microarray analyses of multiple tissues (thymus, spleen, liver, blood cells, and breast). Cases and controls were rigorously paired to avoid bias.
In total, 18,880 unique peptides were identified (PeptideProphet peptide error rate ≤1%), with 3884 and 1659 non-redundant protein groups identified in plasma and tissue datasets, respectively. Sixty-one of these protein groups overlapped between cancer plasma and cancer tissue.
Conclusions and clinical relevance
These data are of use for advancing our understanding of cancer biology, for software and quality control tool development, investigations of analytical variation in MS/MS data, and selection of proteotypic peptides for MRM-MS. The availability of these datasets will contribute positively to clinical proteomics.
Breast cancer; Her2; mouse; proteome; transcriptome
High-throughput technologies can now identify hundreds of candidate protein biomarkers for any disease with relative ease. However, because there are no assays for the majority of proteins and de novo immunoassay development is prohibitively expensive, few candidate biomarkers are tested in clinical studies. We tested whether the analytical performance of a biomarker identification pipeline based on targeted mass spectrometry would be sufficient for data-dependent prioritization of candidate biomarkers, de novo development of assays and multiplexed biomarker verification. We used a data-dependent triage process to prioritize a subset of putative plasma biomarkers from >1,000 candidates previously identified using a mouse model of breast cancer. Eighty-eight novel quantitative assays based on selected reaction monitoring mass spectrometry were developed, multiplexed and evaluated in 80 plasma samples. Thirty-six proteins were verified as being elevated in the plasma of tumor-bearing animals. The analytical performance of this pipeline suggests that it should support the use of an analogous approach with human samples.
Tumor development is accompanied by a complex host systemic response, which includes inflammatory and angiogenic reactions. Both tumor-derived and systemic response proteins are detected in plasma from cancer patients. However, given their non-specific nature, systemic response proteins can confound the detection or diagnosis of neoplasia. Here, we have applied an in-depth quantitative proteomic approach to analyze plasma protein changes in mouse models of subacute irritant-driven inflammation, autoreactive inflammation, and matrix associated angiogenesis and compared results to previously described findings from mouse models of polyoma middle T-driven breast cancer and Pdx1-Cre KrasG12D Ink4a/Arf lox/lox -induced pancreatic cancer. Among the confounding models, approximately 1/3 of all quantified plasma proteins exhibited a significant change in abundance compared to control mice. Of the proteins that changed in abundance, the majority were unique to each model. Altered proteins included those involved in acute phase response, inflammation, extracellular matrix remodeling, angiogenesis, and TGFβ signaling. Comparison of changes in plasma proteins between the confounder models and the two cancer models revealed proteins that were restricted to the cancer-bearing mice, reflecting the known biology of these tumors. This approach provides a basis for distinguishing between protein changes in plasma that are cancer-related and those that are part of a non-specific host response.