Serum proteomic abnormality predating screen detection of ovarian cancer
Gammerman, A., Vovk, V., Burford, B., Nouretdinov, I., Luo, Z.Y., Chervonenkis, A., Waterfield, M., Cramer, R., Tempst, P., Villanueva, J., Kabir, M., Camuzeaux, S., Timms, J., Menon, U. and Jacobs, I. (2009) Serum proteomic abnormality predating screen detection of ovarian cancer. Computer Journal, 52 (3). pp. 326-333. ISSN 0010-4620
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1093/comjnl/bxn021
Ovarian cancer is characterized by vague, non-specific symptoms, advanced stage at diagnosis and poor overall survival. A nested case control study was undertaken on stored serial serum samples from women who developed ovarian cancer and healthy controls (matched for serum processing and storage conditions as well as attributes such as age) in a pilot randomized controlled trial of ovarian cancer screening. The unique feature of this study is that the women were screened for up to 7 years. The serum samples underwent prefractionation using a reversed-phase batch extraction protocol prior to MALDI-TOF MS data acquisition. Our exploratory analysis shows that combining a single MS peak with CA125 allows statistically significant discrimination at the 5% level between cases and controls up to 12 months in advance of the original diagnosis of ovarian cancer. Such combinations work much better than a single peak or CA125 alone. This paper demonstrates that mass spectra from the low molecular weight serum proteome carry information useful for early detection of ovarian cancer. The next step is to identify the specific biomarkers that make early detection possible.