Office of Technology Transfer – University of Michigan

Molecular Profiling of Thyroid Cancer

Technology #3106

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Thomas J. Giordano
Managed By
Ed Pagani
Associate Director, Health Technologies 734-763-3558
Patent Protection
US Patent Pending
US Patent Pending
Molecular classification of papillary thyroid carcinoma: distinct BRAF, RAS, and RET/PTC mutation-specific gene expression profiles discovered by DNA microarray analysis.
Oncogene, Volume 24. Page 6646. 2005


In the US, over 33,000 new cases of thyroid cancer was diagnosed in 2007, with a mortality rate of 0.5 per 100,000 people. Papillary carcinoma (PC) account for up to 80% of the malignant thyroid cancers. Although most of the PCs are not life threatening, some are recurrent and are associated with significant morbidity. While the molecular mechanism of thyroid cancer is yet to be elucidated, particular genetic mutations have been associated with majority of PCs. In this regard, improved methods for the early diagnosis and treatment of thyroid cancer is necessary.


Researchers at the University of Michigan have discovered gene expression profiles associated with thyroid cancers. In particular, the nature of thyroid cancer was determined via expression levels of kallikrein 10, claudin 1, and thyroid peroxidase (TPO), among others. The invention includes methods and kits for diagnosing and characterizing thyroid cancer into sub-types, as well as methods for screening compounds that modulate cancer marker expression or function.

Applications and Advantages


  • Diagnosis and prognosis for thyroid cancer
  • Potential therapies for thyroid cancer


  • Genes provide targets for cancer drugs