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Tumour Biol. 2014 Apr;35(4):3855-9. doi: 10.1007/s13277-013-1510-8. Epub 2014 Jan 17.

Fatty acid synthase (FASN) levels in serum of colorectal cancer patients: correlation with clinical outcomes.

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  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Medical School of Southeast University, Southeast University, DingjiaQiao 87, Nanjing, 210009, People's Republic of China.


Fatty acid synthase (FASN) is a common phenotype to many kinds of human cancers, such as those of the breast, ovary, pancreas, prostate, colon, and so on. Increased FASN levels have been detected in the serum of the patients with breast and pancreatic cancers. The relationship between the FASN level in serum and the clinicopathological characteristics of colorectal cancer is investigated in this study. FASN levels in serum were examined with enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) in 74 patients with colorectal cancer and 40 healthy persons. Pathological and clinical factors associated with FASN concentrations in serum were investigated and analyzed by statistical analysis. The FASN level in colorectal cancer patients' serum is significantly higher than that in healthy persons' serum. FASN levels in the serum of colorectal cancer patients are associated with tumor extent, lymph node metabasis status, distant metastasis, and tumor clinical stage. The 5-year overall survival rate and 5-year disease-free survival rate among patients with low FASN levels in serum are significantly higher than those among patients with high FASN levels in serum (log-rank P = 0.003). The high FASN level in serum is a promising independent predictor of colorectal cancers with advanced phases, late clinical stages, and shorter survival. These results suggest that FASN concentration in serum may be a potential and useful tumor marker.

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