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Study Identifies Fibroblast Growth Factor 18 as an Ovarian Cancer Biomarker

Ovarian cancer is one of the leading causes of cancer-related death in women and is often not detected until the later stages of disease, which contributes to poor prognosis. Biomarkers that can be used for early diagnosis and outcome have been identified; however, many of these have not been evaluated at the biological and clinical levels. In the current issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Michael Birrer and colleagues at Massachusetts General Hospital identify fibroblast growth factor 18 (FGF18) as a predictive marker for poor overall survival in ovarian cancer patients. Overexpression of the gene encoding FGF18 was associated with enhanced tumor blood vessel formation and expression of cancer promoting cytokines. These data indicate that further studies on the predictive potential FGF18 and its use as a therapeutic target in ovarian cancer are warranted.

Study: FGF18 as a prognostic and therapeutic biomarker in ovarian cancer [The Journal of Clinical Investigation]

Source: EurekAlert!

New Biomarker May Help In Detecting Gliomas, Reports Neurosurgery

Researchers using sophisticated genetic testing techniques have identified a promising new biomarker for diagnosis of glioma—the most common type of malignant brain tumor, reports the January issue of Neurosurgery, official journal of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health.

Biomarkers Could Give Early Warning of Late Heart Transplant Rejection

Researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital have found a combination of biomarkers related to blood vessel and tissue injury that, when measured together, could signal when a transplanted heart is becoming damaged to the point of failure, a process that is often undetected. The markers would give doctors an opportunity to intervene and save a recipient’s heart, and also provide a starting point for identifying long-term rejection biomarkers for several kinds of organ transplants.

A Urine Test for a Rare and Elusive Disease

A set of proteins detected in urine by researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital may prove to be the first biomarkers for Kawasaki disease, an uncommon but increasingly prevalent disease which causes inflammation of blood vessels that can lead to enlarged coronary arteries and even heart attacks in some children. If validated in more patients with Kawasaki disease, the markers could make the disease easier to diagnose and give doctors an opportunity to start treatment earlier.

New Clue to Diabetic Heart Disease Discovered

Scientists from King’s College London have identified a molecule that could help predict type 2 diabetes and identify diabetics that are most vulnerable to heart and circulatory disease.