Correlation of elevated plasma levels of two structurally related growth factors, heparin affin regulatory peptide and midkine, in advanced solid tumor patients
Review articleOpen access

AbstractHeparin affin regulatory peptide (HARP) and midkine (MK) are growth factors, expressed in carcinomas, neuroblastomas and gliomas. In this study, we measured the levels of HARP and MK in plasma samples from 77 cancer patients. The patients had advanced tumors with loco-regional (n=18) or metastatic (n=49) diseases and 10 patients have their diseases limited to the primary site. HARP and MK plasma concentrations were significantly higher in all of these different subgroups of cancer patients (P<0.05 in all cases), when compared to healthy controls (n=30). Neither HARP nor MK levels were significantly different between patients with loco-regional and metastatic tumors (P=0.203 and 0.242, respectively). Moreover, a strong correlation between the elevations of the plasma levels of these two proteins (r2=0.546) in these cancer patients was found. Measurements of these secreted angiogenic growth factors may be useful for evaluation of cancer diagnosis.

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