Research Papers:

High serum haptoglobin level is associated with tumor progression and predicts poor prognosis in non-small cell lung cancer

Jianjun Lu, Yanhong Wang, Miansheng Yan, Pinning Feng, Linjing Yuan, Yuesu Cai, Xin Xia, Min Liu, Jinmei Luo and Laisheng Li _

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:41758-41766. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.9676

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Jianjun Lu1,2,*, Yanhong Wang3,*, Miansheng Yan1,*, Pinning Feng1, Linjing Yuan4, Yuesu Cai1,5, Xin Xia2, Min Liu1, Jinmei Luo1,3, Laisheng Li1

1Department of Laboratory Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, 510080, People’s Republic of China

2Department of Thoracic Surgery, The First Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, 510080, People’s Republic of China

3Department of Internal Medicine, Medical Intensive Care Unit and Division of Respiratory Diseases, Third Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, 510630, People’s Republic of China

4Department of Gynaecology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, 510080, People’s Republic of China

5Institute of Laboratory Medicine, Guangdong Medical University, Dongguan, 523808, People’s Republic of China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Correspondence to:

Laisheng Li, email: lilaish@mail.sysu.edu.cn

Jinmei Luo, email: luojm3@mail.sysu.edu.cn

Keywords: haptoglobin, NSCLC, progression, prognosis, biomarker

Received: April 26, 2016     Accepted: May 22, 2016     Published: May 27, 2016


The overall survival time of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) has not improved dramatically in recent decades. An important reason is the lacking of valuable biomarkers. Haptoglobin was reported to have activities of anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, autoimmune and tumor angiogenesis. However its potential role as a tumor biomarker was not well recognized. We used an immunoturbidimetry method to measure serum haptoglobin levels in 205 NSCLC patients, and 210 normal healthy controls. We found that serum haptoglobin levels were significantly elevated in NSCLC patients compared with normal healthy controls (1.985±1.039 mg/mLvs. 0.922 ± 0.495 mg/mL, respectively, P < 0.0001). Higher serum haptoglobin levels were associated with advanced TNM stage, lymph node metastasis, and distant metastasis. Area under receiver operating characteristic curve (ROC) for serum haptoglobin was 0.809 (95% CI: 0.767–0.852) at a specificity of 0.881 and sensitivity of 0.639. The optimal cut-off value of haptoglobin was 1.495 mg/mL for discriminating NSCLC from normal healthy controls. Kaplan-Meier log rank analysis revealed that the higher serum haptoglobin levels group had a poorer overall survival compared with lower haptoglobin group (the median survival was 12.0 weeks , 26.0 weeks, respectively, P < 0.01). Further univariate and multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that serum haptoglobin was an independent risk factor of prognosis of NSCLC patients (P < 0.01, P = 0.01, respectively). In conclusion, our study suggests that serum haptoglobin may act as useful clinical serological biomarkers in progression and prognostic evaluation in NSCLC.

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