Overview of Potential Oncomarkers for Detection of Early Stages of Ovarian Cancer


Klin Onkol 2011; 24(2): 106-111. DOI: 10.14735/amko2011106.

The causes of ovarian cancer have not been fully elucidated yet but genetic predisposition is found in approximately 10% of patients. When the disease is detected at an early stage, up to 90% of patients have a hope of recovery. However, no preventive measures or precise screening tests to detect early stages of this disease are known yet. Standard tumor markers (CA125) are usually investigated in women with an increased risk. Nevertheless, due to low sensitivity and specificity during the first stage of the cancer, CA125 determination showed a very low efficacy (less than 26%). There has been a considerable progress over the recent years in understanding the molecular mechanisms leading to tumor formation and metastasis. Gradually, 46 genes were identified, initially named tumor endothelial markers (TEM), the expression of which is increased in tumors compared to normal endothelial cells. Death receptor 6 (DR6) and glycoprotein M6B (GPM6B), both detectable from patients serum, are among the most promising candidates for a marker of an early stage of ovarian cancer. This review aims to clearly describe potential as well as clinically used tumor markers useful in an early detection of ovarian cancer. Search for new markers, characterized by increased expression in patients’ blood is a highly topical issue.