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Protein could be marker of early ovarian cancer. (Blood test).

SAN FRANCISCO--Early ovarian cancer might be detectable with a blood test.

Dr. Bin Ye reported a case-control study of 99 patients with ovarian cancer and 201 age-matched controls at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research. The hemoglobin-binding protein haptoglobin-[alpha] was elevated in the sera of women with all histologic types of ovarian cancer.

Further analysis showed that the protein identified ovarian cancer with 82% sensitivity and 83% specificity, said Dr. Ye, a research fellow at Harvard Medical School, Boston.

Dr. Ye and colleagues used liquid chromatography mass spectroscopy, and the Surface-Enhanced Laser Desorption/Ionization (SELDI) ProteinChip system, a technique developed by Ciphergen Biosystems of Fremont, Calif. The system permits the rapid analysis of hundreds of proteins to create a "snapshot" of the protein activity in a patient's tumor.

Through this analysis, "we found that the [alpha] subunit of the haptoglobin protein was elevated in serum samples across patients with different subtypes of ovarian tumors, and less so across the healthy control samples." Mean haptoglobin-[alpha] levels were 74 [micro]g/mL in serum from the cancer patients, compared with 41 [micro]g/mL from the control subjects, Dr. Ye said.
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Author:MacReady, Nora
Publication:OB GYN News
Date:Sep 1, 2002
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