Molecularly targeted therapeutic and imaging strategies directed at aberrant signaling pathways in pancreatic tumor cells may improve the poor outcome of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA). Therefore, relevant molecular targets need to be identified.
Methods: We collected publicly available expression profiles of patient-derived normal pancreatic tissue (n = 77) and PDA samples (n = 103). Functional genomic messenger RNA profiling was applied to predict target upregulation on the protein level. We prioritized these targets based on current status of preclinical therapeutic and imaging evaluation in PDA.
Results: We identified 213 significantly upregulated proteins in PDA compared with normal pancreatic tissue. We prioritized mucin-1, mesothelin, g-glutamyltransferase 5, and cathepsin-E as the most interesting targets, because studies already demonstrated their potential for both therapeutic and imaging strategies in literature.
Conclusion: This study can assist clinicians and drug developers in deciding which theranostic targets should be taken for further clinical evaluation in PDA.