Early detection of ovarian cancer in samples pre-diagnosis using CA125 and MALDI-MS peaks

John F. Timms, Usha Menon, Dmitry Devetyarov, Ali Tiss, Stephane Camuzeaux, Katherine Mccurrie, Ilia Nouretdinov, Brian Burford, Celia Smith, Aleksandra Gentry-Maharaj, Rachel Hallett, Jeremy Ford, Zhiyuan Luo, Volodya Vovk, Alex Gammerman, Rainer Cramer, Ian Jacobs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Aim: A nested case-control discovery study was undertaken to test whether information within the serum peptidome can improve on the utility of CA125 for early ovarian cancer detection. Materials and Methods: High-throughput matrix-assisted laser desorption ionisation mass spectrometry (MALDI-MS) was used to profile 295 serum samples from women pre-dating their ovarian cancer diagnosis and from 585 matched control samples. Classification rules incorporating CA125 and MS peak intensities were tested for discriminating ability. Results: Two peaks were found which in combination with CA125 discriminated cases from controls up to 15 and 11 months before diagnosis, respectively, and earlier than using CA125 alone. One peak was identified as connective tissue-activating peptide III (CTAPIII), whilst the other was putatively identified as platelet factor 4 (PF4). ELISA data supported the down-regulation of PF4 in early cancer cases. Conclusion: Serum peptide information with CA125 improves lead time for early detection of ovarian cancer. The candidate markers are platelet-derived chemokines, suggesting a link between platelet function and tumour development.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)289-306
Number of pages18
JournalCancer Genomics and Proteomics
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2011


  • Biomarkers
  • CA125
  • Connective tissue-activating peptide III
  • Early diagnosis
  • MALDI-MS serum profiling
  • Ovarian cancer
  • PF4
  • Platelet factor 4


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