Serum folate receptor alpha, mesothelin and megakaryocyte potentiating factor in ovarian cancer: association to disease stage and grade and comparison to CA125 and HE4

O'Shannessy, Daniel J.; Somers, Elizabeth B.; Palmer, Leslie M.; Thiel, Robert P.; Oberoi, Pankaj; Heath, Ryan; Marcucci, Lisa
June 2013
Journal of Ovarian Research;2013, Vol. 6 Issue 1, p1
Academic Journal
Background: Evaluate and compare the utility of serum folate receptor alpha (FRA) and megakaryocyte potentiating factor (MPF) determinations relative to serum CA125, mesothelin (MSLN) and HE4 for the diagnosis of epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC). Methods: Electrochemiluminescent assays were developed for FRA, MSLN and MPF and used to assess the levels of these biomarkers in 258 serum samples from ovarian cancer patients. Commercial assays for CA125 and HE4 were run on a subset of 176 of these samples representing the serous histology. Data was analyzed by histotype, stage and grade of disease. A comparison of the levels of the FRA, MSLN and MPF biomarkers in serum, plasma and urine was also performed in a subset of 57 patients. Results: Serum and plasma levels of FRA, MSLN and MPF were shown to be highly correlated between the two matrices. Correlations between all pairs of markers in 318 serum samples were calculated and demonstrated the highest correlation between HE4 and MPF, and the lowest between FRA and MPF. Serum levels of all markers showed a dependence on both stage and grade of disease. A multi-marker logistic regression model was developed resulting in an AUC=0.91 for diagnosis of serous ovarian cancer, a significant improvement over the AUC for any of the individual markers, including CA125 (AUC=0.84). Conclusions: FRA has significant potential as a biomarker for ovarian cancer, both as a stand-alone marker and in combination with other known markers for EOC. The lack of correlation between the various markers analyzed in the present study suggests that a panel of markers can aid in the detection and/or monitoring of this disease.


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