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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(8), 1756; doi:10.3390/ijms18081756

Galectin-3 Performance in Histologic and Cytologic Assessment of Thyroid Nodules: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

1
Department of Nuclear Medicine and Thyroid Centre, Oncology Institute of Southern Switzerland, Via Ospedale, 6500 Bellinzona, Switzerland
2
Department of Medico-surgical Sciences and Biotechnologies, Sapienza University of Rome, 04100 Latina, Italy
3
Department of Experimental Medicine, Sapienza University of Rome, 00161 Rome, Italy
4
Pathology Unit, University Hospital Campus Bio Medico, 00128 Rome, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 15 July 2017 / Revised: 8 August 2017 / Accepted: 10 August 2017 / Published: 11 August 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Galectins in Cancer and Translational Medicine)
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Abstract

The literature on Galectin-3 (Gal-3) was systematically reviewed to achieve more robust information on its histologic reliability in identifying thyroid cancers and on the concordance between Gal-3 test in histologic and cytologic samples. A computer search of the PubMed and Scopus databases was conducted by combinations of the terms thyroid and Gal-3. Initially, 545 articles were found and, after their critical review, 52 original papers were finally included. They reported 8172 nodules with histologic evaluation of Gal-3, of which 358 with also preoperative FNAC Gal-3 assessment. At histology, Gal-3 sensitivity was 87% (95% confidence intervals [CI] from 86% to 88%), and specificity 87% (95% CI from 86% to 88%); in both cases, we found heterogeneity (I2 85% and 93%, respectively) and significant publication bias (p < 0.001). The pooled rate of positive Gal-3 at fine needle aspiration (FNAC) among cancers with histologically proven Gal-3 positivity was 94% (95% CI from 89% to 97%), with neither heterogeneity (I2 14.5%) nor bias (p = 0.086). These data show high reliability of Gal-3 for thyroid cancer at histology, while its sensitivity on FNAC samples is lower. The limits of cytologic preparations and interpretation of Gal-3 results have to be solved. View Full-Text
Keywords: thyroid cancer; meta-analysis; cytology; Galectin-3; fine needle aspiration (FNAC) thyroid cancer; meta-analysis; cytology; Galectin-3; fine needle aspiration (FNAC)
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Trimboli, P.; Virili, C.; Romanelli, F.; Crescenzi, A.; Giovanella, L. Galectin-3 Performance in Histologic and Cytologic Assessment of Thyroid Nodules: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18, 1756.

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