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Background—Poor prognosis of pancreatic cancer (PanCa) is associated with lack of an effective early diagnostic biomarker. This study elucidates significance of MUC13, as a diagnostic/prognostic marker of PanCa.

Methods—MUC13 was assessed in tissues using our in-house generated anti-MUC13 mouse monoclonal antibody and analyzed for clinical correlation by immunohistochemistry, immunoblotting, RT-PCR, computational and submicron scale mass-density fluctuation analyses, ROC and Kaplan Meir curve analyses.

Results—MUC13 expression was detected in 100% pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PanIN) lesions (Mean composite score: MCS=5.8; AUC >0.8, P<0.0001), 94.6% of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) samples (MCS=9.7, P<0.0001) as compared to low expression in tumor adjacent tissues (MCS=4, P<0.001) along with faint or no expression in normal pancreatic tissues (MCS=0.8; AUC >0.8; P<0.0001). Nuclear MUC13 expression positively correlated with nodal metastasis (P<0.05), invasion of cancer to peripheral tissues (P<0.5) and poor patient survival (P<0.05; prognostic AUC=0.9). Submicron scale mass density and artificial intelligence based algorithm analyses also elucidated association of MUC13 with greater morphological disorder (P<0.001) and nuclear MUC13 as strong predictor for cancer aggressiveness and poor patient survival.

Conclusion—This study provides significant information regarding MUC13 expression/ subcellular localization in PanCa samples and supporting the use anti-MUC13 MAb for the development of PanCa diagnostic/prognostic test.


© 2018 International Hepato-Pancreato-Biliary Association Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. Original published version available at

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Publication Title

HPB : the official journal of the International Hepato Pancreato Biliary Association

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Mentor/PI Department

Immunology and Microbiology



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