MicroRNAs and markers of neutrophil activation as predictors of early incidental post-surgical pulmonary embolism in patients with intracranial tumors

Julia Oto, Emma Plana, María José Solmoirago, Álvaro Fernández-Pardo, David Hervás, Fernando Cana, Francisco España, Andrea Artoni, Paolo Bucciarelli, Giorgio Carrabba, Silvia Navarro, Giuliana Merati, Pilar Medina

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Venous thromboembolism (VTE) is a common complication of cancer that severely increases morbidity and mortality. Patients with intracranial tumors are more likely to develop VTE than patients with cancers at other sites. Conversely, limited tools exist to identify patients with high thrombotic risk. Upon activation, neutrophils release their content through different mechanisms triggering thrombosis. We explored the ability of microRNAs (miRNAs) and plasma markers of neutrophil activation measured before surgery to predict the risk of early post-surgical pulmonary embolism (PE) in glioma and meningioma patients. We recruited and prospectively followed 50 patients with glioma and 50 with meningioma, 34% of whom in each group developed an early objectively-diagnosed post-surgical PE. We measured miRNA expression and neutrophil markers (cell-free DNA, nucleosomes, calprotectin and myeloperoxidase) before surgery. In glioma patients, we adjusted and validated a predictive model for post-surgical PE with 6 miRNAs: miR-363-3p, miR-93-3p, miR-22-5p, miR-451a, miR-222-3p and miR-140-3p (AUC = 0.78; 95% Confidence Interval (CI) [0.63, 0.94]) and another with cfDNA and myeloperoxidase as predictors (AUC = 0.71; 95%CI [0.52, 0.90]). Furthermore, we combined both types of markers and obtained a model with myeloperoxidase and miR-140-3p as predictors (AUC = 0.79; 95%CI [0.64, 0.94]). In meningioma patients we fitted and validated a predictive model with 6 miRNAs: miR-29a-3p, miR-660-5p, miR-331-3p, miR-126-5p, miR-23a-3p and miR-23b-3p (AUC = 0.69; 95%CI [0.52, 0.87]). All our models outperformed the Khorana score. This is the first study that analyzes the capability of plasma miRNAs and neutrophil activation markers to predict early post-surgical PE in glioma and meningioma patients. The estimation of the thrombotic risk before surgery may promote a tailored thromboprophylaxis in a selected group of high-risk patients, in order to minimize the incidence of PE and avoid bleedings.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1536
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020


  • Cancer
  • Glioma
  • Meningioma
  • MicroRNA
  • Neutrophil activation
  • Pulmonary embolism
  • Venous thromboembolism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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