Plectin-1 is a biomarker of malignant pancreatic intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms

Dirk Bausch, Mari Mino-Kenudson, Carlos Fernández-del Castillo, Andrew L. Warshaw, Kimberly A. Kelly, Sarah P. Thayer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Introduction Pancreatic intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms (IPMN) are now identified with increasing frequency. The detection of carcinoma in IPMN is difficult and suffers from high false-positive and false-negative rates, often resulting in inappropriate treatment decisions. Improved detection of malignancy using novel biomarkers may therefore improve diagnostic accuracy. One such promising novel biomarker is Plectin-1 (Plec-1). Methods Using immunohistochemistry, Plec-1 expression was assayed in benign (low and moderate dysplasia, n=6) as well as malignant IPMN (high-grade dysplasia and invasive carcinoma, n=31) and lymph node metastases from carcinoma arising in IPMN (n=12). Furthermore, cyst fluids from benign (n=3) and malignant IPMN (n=4) were evaluated for Plec-1 expression. Results and discussion Twenty-six of 31 malignant IPMN and all 12 lymph node metastases were Plec-1 positive. In contrast, only one of six benign IPMN expressed Plec-1. The specificity of Plec-1 in distinguishing malignant IPMN from benign IPMN was 83% and its sensitivity 84%. Furthermore, all (four out of four) cyst fluids from malignant IPMN, but one of the three benign IPMN, were Plec-1 positive. These data support Plec-1 as an excellent biomarker for the early etection of carcinoma arising in IPMN.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1948-1954
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Gastrointestinal Surgery
Issue number11
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Biomarker
  • Malignant IPMN
  • Plectin-1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Gastroenterology


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