Endometrial carcinoma (EC) is a common gynecological cancer that affects ~3% of all women. Of the ~39,000 cases that are diagnosed annually, about 6,600 are fatal. Surgical excision is the primary method of treatment for this disease and while recurrence is common, chemotherapy is advantageous only to a subset of the patients.EC consists of a pre-malignant phase that can become malignant. Unfortunately the genes involved in the development of these states are unknown. Currently, the only means of predicting an individuals risk for developing EC is through histological examination, although this method is highly unreliable. Identification of a biochemical marker for the detection of EC would not only allow for earlier treatment of the disease, but could possibly serve as a therapeutic target as well.
Scientists at UCLA have identified a biomarker that can predict: 1) a patients risk for developing malignant endometrial carcinoma and 2) the prognosis. Samples from patients with atypical endometrial proliferative disease were examined and the likelihood of progression to cancer was determined to be highly correlated with the biomarker; elevated levels predict progression to cancer while low levels predict non-progression. In patients with endometrial cancer the biomarker was also found to serve as a prognosticator; elevated levels of the biomarker predict a poor clinical outcome. UCLA scientists have also succeeded in generating antibodies against the biomarker. These antibodies can potentially be used for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes.
|United States Of America||Issued Patent||9,110,064||08/18/2015||2005-478|