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Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) levels as a tool to discriminate between malignant and nonmalignant ascites

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Abstract:

Nascimento I, Schaer R, Lemaire D, Freire S, Paule B, Carvalho S, Meyer R, Schaer-Barbosa H. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) levels as a tool to discriminate between malignant and nonmalignant ascites. APMIS 2004;112:585–7.

Ascites formation is commonly associated with cancer, although it is also present in other diseases. The aim of this study was to evaluate the usefulness of vascular endothelial growth factor as a malignancy marker in ascites of different etiologies. The levels of VEGF in 32 malignant and in 31 non-malignant ascites were determined by enzyme immunoassay (ELISA). VEGF levels were significantly higher in malignant than in non-malignant ascites (median=1265.9 pg/ml×114.6 pg/ml; p<0.0001). We observed 72% sensitivity and 90% specificity, using 662 pg/ml as a cut-off value. Therefore, this approach can be used as a marker for a first screening to discriminate between malignant and nonmalignant ascites.

Keywords: VEGF; angiogenesis; ascites; diagnosis

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1600-0463.2004.apm1120904.x

Affiliations: 1: Laboratory of Immunology and Molecular Biology, Health Science Institute, 2: Department of Pathology, Hospital Universitário Professor Edgar Santos, Federal University of Bahia, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil

Publication date: September 1, 2004

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