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Diagnostic Performance of Biomarkers for Bladder Cancer Detection Suitable for Community and Primary Care Settings: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.

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Papavasiliou, Evie 
Sills, Valerie A 
Calanzani, Natalia 


Evidence on the use of biomarkers to detect bladder cancer in the general population is scarce. This study aimed to systematically review evidence on the diagnostic performance of biomarkers which might be suitable for use in community and primary care settings [PROSPERO Registration: CRD42021258754]. Database searches on MEDLINE and EMBASE from January 2000 to May 2022 resulted in 4914 unique citations, 44 of which met inclusion criteria. Included studies reported on 112 biomarkers and combinations. Heterogeneity of designs, populations and outcomes allowed for the meta-analysis of three biomarkers identified in at least five studies (NMP-22, UroVysion, uCyt+). These three biomarkers showed similar discriminative ability (adjusted AUC estimates ranging from 0.650 to 0.707), although for NMP-22 and UroVysion there was significant unexplained heterogeneity between included studies. Narrative synthesis revealed the potential of these biomarkers for use in the general population based on their reported clinical utility, including effects on clinicians, patients, and the healthcare system. Finally, we identified some promising novel biomarkers and biomarker combinations (N < 3 studies for each biomarker/combination) with negative predictive values of ≥90%. These biomarkers have potential for use as a triage tool in community and primary care settings for reducing unnecessary specialist referrals. Despite promising emerging evidence, further validation studies in the general population are required at different stages within the diagnostic pathway.


Peer reviewed: True


biomarkers, bladder cancer, community, diagnostic performance, early detection, primary care

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Cancers (Basel)

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Cancer Research UK (C8640/A23385)
Wellcome Trust Primary Care Clinician PhD Fellowship (203921/Z/16/Z)
International Alliance for Cancer Early Detection Project Award (ACEDFR3 0620I135PR007)