Send to

Choose Destination
Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2008 Mar;17(3):585-93. doi: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-07-0596.

Cyclin E overexpression in epithelial ovarian cancer characterizes an etiologic subgroup.

Author information

Department of Community and Family Medicine, Duke University Medical Center, Box 2949, Durham, NC 27710, USA.



The objective of this study was to determine whether cyclin E overexpression defines an etiologically distinct subgroup of ovarian cancer.


We analyzed data from 538 epithelial ovarian cancer cases and 629 controls enrolled in a population-based case-control study. Cyclin E protein overexpression was assessed using immunohistochemistry. Case-control and case-case comparisons were done to evaluate the relationship between cyclin E overexpression and epidemiologic risk factors. Logistic regression models were used to estimate odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CI) while adjusting for potential confounders.


Case-control comparisons showed ovarian cancers with and without cyclin E overexpression have different associations with several epidemiologic risk factors. A dose-response relationship was observed between lifetime ovulatory cycles (LOC) and ovarian cancer that overexpressed cyclin E [OR, 1.8; 95% CI, 1.1-3.0 for moderately high LOC (265-390 cycles) and OR, 2.7; 95% CI, 1.6-4.5 for high LOC (>390 cycles) compared with low LOC (<265 cycles)], but no relationship was seen with cancers that lacked overexpression. The most important components of the LOC variable contributing to the differences in the association with the cyclin E subgroups of ovarian cancer were months of oral contraceptive use and months pregnant.


Cyclin E overexpression is associated with a high number of LOC, largely influenced by oral contraceptive use and pregnancy. This suggests that cyclin E overexpression is a molecular signature characteristic of ovarian cancer cases that may arise via a pathway that involves ovulation-induced alterations.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire
Loading ...
Support Center