The volatilomic signature of human gastric cancer cell lines (HGC-27 and CLS-145)

The volatilomic signature of human gastric cancer cell lines (HGC-27 and CLS-145) 

Paweł Mochalski 1,2, Andreas Leiherer 3,4,5, Christine Heinzle 3,5, Axel Muendlein 3, Daria Ślefarska 1,2, Linda Mezmale 6, Ilze Kikuste 6,7, Ivars Tolmanis 7, Gidi Shani 9, Marcis Leja 6,7,8, Hossam Haick 9

1. Breath Research Institute of the University of Innsbruck, Dornbirn, Austria,

2. Institute of Chemistry, Jan Kochanowski University, Kielce, Poland,

3. Vorarlberg Institute for Vascular Investigation and Treatment (VIVIT), Feldkirch, Austria 

4. Private University of the Principality of Liechtenstein, Triesen, Liechtenstein,

5. Medical Central Laboratories, Feldkirch, Austria

6. Institute of Clinical and Preventive Medicine & Faculty of Medicine, University of Latvia, Riga, Latvia

7. Digestive Diseases Centre GASTRO, Riga, Latvia

8. Riga East University Hospital, Riga, Latvia

9. Department of Chemical Engineering and Russel Berrie Nanotechnology Institute, Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel

Poster PDF


Analyzing volatile organic compounds (VOCs) released by the human body provides a new approach to cancer screening. The metabolism of cancer cells differs significantly from that of normal cells and this difference can be detected in VOC profiles. In that case, in vitro studies has a great importance for the exploration of these changes in the exhaled air and other body emanations. 
The main aim of the following studies was to identify the volatile metabolomic signature of selected gastric cancer cell lines and to find possible differences between these traces. 

In the research were analyzed VOCs produced and metabolized by two Human Gastric Carcinoma cell lines (CLS-145 and HGC-27) and  Human Stomach Epithelial Cells (HSEC) as a control. Gas chromatography with mass spectrometry detection (GC-MS) and needle trap overhead extraction (HS-NTE) were used as the pre-concentration method. 

A total of 12 sets of cultures were prepared (three cultures containing different lines and medium without cells). Twelve species were found to be ingested e. g.  2-methylpropanal, 2-methylbutanal, heptanal, nonanal, benzaldehyde, 2-pentylfuran and 2-methylfuran and ten were produced e.g. ethyl acetate, ethyl α-methylbutyrate, 2-nonanone, 3-methyl-1-butanol, 2-ethyl-1-hexanol and 2- methyl-3-(methylthio)furan on all lines tested. It is interesting that HGC-27 cells emitted a number of unique VOCs (2-undecanone, 2-tridecanone, 2-pentadecanone, 2-nonadecanone, cyclopentadecanone and toluene). 

The results obtained during the research confirm that gastric cancer changes the VOC profile of the studied cell lines. Components of these fingerprints, secreted by the human organism, such as breath could assist in the non-invasive diagnosis of gastric cancer. 




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