Aims and background: YKL-40 is secreted by several types of tumors. Increased serum YKL-40 levels have been reported in prostate, glioblastoma, breast and colorectal cancers. Determination of YKL-40 levels may serve as a valuable biomarker for the diagnosis and treatment of gastric cancer. The purpose of this study was to determine the serum YKL-40 levels expressed in gastric carcinomas.
Methods: Between 2009 and 2011, we retrospectively reviewed 100 patients with gastric cancer and compared their serum samples to 75 healthy volunteers. YKL-40 levels were determined by an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).
Results: We found significantly higher serum levels of YKL-40 in patients with gastric cancer compared to the healthy population
(P < 0.0001). We also found significant differences in serum YKL-40 levels between female and male patients with gastric cancer
(P < 0.01).
Conclusions: YKL-40 is over-expressed in gastric cancer, suggesting a more aggressive phenotype. YKL-40 may be a useful serum biomarker for gastric cancer identification, and future studies should focus on the role of YKL-40 in the tumorigenesis of gastric cancer and responsiveness toward treatment.
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