Serum sE-selectin levels and carcinoembryonic antigen mRNA-expressing cells in peripheral blood as prognostic factors in colorectal cancer patients

Patrizia Ferroni, Mario Roselli, Antonella Spila, Roberta D'Alessandro, Ilaria Portarena, Sabrina Mariotti, Raffaele Palmirotta, Oreste Buonomo, Giuseppe Petrella, Fiorella Guadagni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


BACKGROUND: This study analyzed the possible prognostic value of presurgical serum soluble (s)E-selectin levels and/or carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) mRNA positivity in predicting the disease-free survival of colorectal cancer (CRC) patients. METHODS: CEA mRNA (obtained from blood-borne cells by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction [RT-PCR]), tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), and sE-selectin levels were analyzed in blood samples obtained from 78 patients with primary (n = 62) or recurrent (n = 16) CRC, 40 patients with benign colorectal (CR) diseases, and 78 controls. RESULTS: CEA mRNA positivity by RT-PCR was significantly associated with advanced stage (P <.05). Median baseline sE-selectin levels were higher in patients with CRC (43 ng/mL) compared with controls (36 ng/mL) or patients with benign CR diseases (31 ng/mL, P <.001). These were significantly associated with CEA mRNA positivity by RT-PCR (P <.05). Multivariate analysis by forward stepping showed that elevated TNF-α (P = .001) and CEA mRNA positivity by RT-PCR (P = .0001) were independent predictors of elevated baseline sE-selectin levels. Positive presurgical sE-selectin levels were associated with an increased recurrence rate compared with patients with low levels of this molecule (P <.001). Positivity for both CEA mRNA and sE-selectin had a negative prognostic impact, with a 5-year recurrence-free survival rate of 51% compared with 95% of patients with negative parameters (P <.05). CONCLUSIONS: Detection of presurgical serum sE-selectin levels and CEA mRNA-positive blood-borne cells in CRC patients might provide useful prognostic information in terms of recurrence-free survival, either alone or in combination, and may help in the choice of more aggressive treatment and/or more strict follow-up procedures in high-risk patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2913-2921
Number of pages9
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Jun 15 2010



  • Blood-borne cells
  • Carcinoembryonic antigen
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Metastasis
  • sE-selectin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology

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