Research Papers:

The prognostic value of pretreatment CA-125 levels and CA-125 normalization in ovarian clear cell carcinoma: a two-academic-institute study

Huimin Bai _, Guisha Sha, Meizhu Xiao, Huiqiao Gao, Dongyan Cao, Jiaxin Yang, Jie Chen, Yue Wang, Zhenyu Zhang and Keng Shen

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:15566-15576. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.7216

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Huimin Bai1,2, Guisha Sha2, Meizhu Xiao1, Huiqiao Gao1, Dongyan Cao2, Jiaxin Yang2, Jie Chen3, Yue Wang4, Zhenyu Zhang1, Keng Shen2

1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Beijing Chao-Yang Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing, China

2Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences & Peking Union Medical College, Beijing, China

3Department of Pathology, Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences & Peking Union Medical College, Beijing, China

4Department of Pathology, Beijing Chao-Yang Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing, China

Correspondence to:

Zhenyu Zhang, e-mail: zhenyuzhang2000@163.com

Keng Shen, e-mail: skpumch@126.com, shenkeng@vip.sina.com

Keywords: clear cell carcinoma, ovary, CA-125, pretreatment, normalization

Received: October 29, 2015    Accepted: January 28, 2016    Published: February 06, 2016


Objectives: The present study investigated the clinical implications of pretreatment carbohydrate antigen 125 (CA-125) levels and CA-125 normalization in patients with ovarian clear cell carcinoma (CCC), and it provides useful information for the improvement of monitoring strategies for this lethal disease.

Methods: The medical records of patients with ovarian CCC who had undergone primary staging surgery or cytoreductive surgery followed by systemic chemotherapy were retrospectively reviewed. A range of clinico-pathological parameters were collected and examined.

Results: A total of 375 women were included in the analysis. FIGO stage (p < 0.001) was identified as the only significant prognostic factor for relapse. Residual tumor and advanced stage (p = 0.001 and p < 0.001, respectively) were identified as independent adverse factors for survival. The potential risk factors associated with elevated pretreatment CA-125 levels included advanced-stage disease, positive residual tumors and negative endometriosis (p < 0.001, p = 0.001 and p <0.001, respectively). Pretreatment CA-125 levels were not associated with relapse-free survival (RFS) or overall survival (OS) (p = 0.060 and p = 0.176, respectively). CA-125 normalization after chemotherapy exhibited a positive linear correlation with advanced stage (r = 0.97, p = 0.001) and residual tumor (r = 0.81, p = 0.027) and a negative relationship with 5-year RFS (r = -0.97, p = 0.002) and 5-year OS (r = -0.97, p= 0.001). Patients with CA-125 levels that normalized before cycle 2 of chemotherapy had a similar prognosis as patients whose CA-125 levels normalized prior to chemotherapy (RFS: p = 0.327; OS: p = 0.654). By contrast, patients with CA-125 levels that normalized after cycle 2 of chemotherapy or never normalized were significantly more likely to experience disease progression.

Conclusions: Pretreatment CA-125 levels are not very useful for predicting clinical outcome. CA-125 levels following treatment are a valid indicator for treatment monitoring. CA-125 normalization after the completion of cycle 1 of chemotherapy represents a distinct inflection point for decreased RFS and OS.

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