A novel marker panel for brain tumors?
9 slide(s) – English – 2011-09-10
A disturbance of iron homeostasis harbours the risk of cellular malfunction including ROS / oxidative stress triggered cell death. The multimeric protein Ferritin acts as cellular antioxidant by sequestering an excess of free iron (Fe2+). Besides intracellular Ferritin, secreted isoforms exist which show immunomodulatory and apoptosis-inducing properties involving p53 activity and Fas signaling. Notably, Ferritin has also been considered a non-specific tumor marker, the serum Ferritin levels increasing with size of tumor. However, little is known on serum Ferritin levels in glial and meningeal tumors, a few reports indicating the grade-dependent elevation of serum Ferritin which declines after surgical intervention.
We investigated serum Ferritin and a panel of apoptosis-related proteins for their potential usability as high grade glioma (HGG)(n=20)/ meningioma (WHO Grade I)(n=12) marker. For this serum diagnostics and analysis of tumor tissue sections by immunohistochemistry were employed. Blood samples from subjects lacking known pathological conditions which could influence serum Ferritin levels served as control (n=68).
Our findings indicate that serum Ferritin levels are increased in HGG patients and decline after surgical removal in patients with stable disease. However, patients with tumor progression show no difference in pre and post surgery Ferritin levels. In meningioma patients, pre surgery Ferritin levels do not differ from control levels but also decrease after surgery.
In tumor tissue, Ferritin shows a heterogeneous staining signal. p53, Fas and FasL are weakly expressed in the tumor tissue. On the contrary, immunohistochemistry of tissue sections reveals a prominent upregulations of Fas regulatory Flip in both types of brain tumors.
Our data provide a promising basis for establishing a reliable diagnostic and/or prognostic serum marker for glial / meningeal tumors.