Serum biomarkers in metastatic renal cell carcinoma

Francisco H. Dexeus, Anne Striegel, Christopher J. Logothetis, Robert J. Amato, Avishay Sella, Frank J. Liu, Karen Fitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


To identify possible clinically valuable markers of metastatic renalcell carcinoma, we measured the serum concentrations of several commercially available biomarkers in 117 patients with this disease. The alpha fetoprotein level was measured in 75 patients and was elevated in 8 (11 %); elevation did not correlate with the presence of liver metastasis. Beta subunit of human chorionic gonadotropin levels increased in 8 of 83 patients tested (10 %). C-terminal parathyroid hormone levels were measured in 79 patients and were elevated in 15 (19 %); their serum creatinine level was normal. Thirteen of this group had normal serum calcium levels, whereas 7 patients with hypercalcemia and no clinically evident bone metastasis had normal parathyroid hormone levels. In only 2 of 72 patients, serum lactate dehydrogenase and its isoenzyme 1 were elevated. Only 1 of 85 patients had mildly elevated serum carcinoembryonic antigen, in contrast to 3 of 7 patients with metastatic transitional cell carcinoma of the renal pelvis who had moderately elevated carcinoembryonic antigen. Elevations in alpha fetoprotein, human chorionic gonadotropin, and parathyroid hormone correlated with the course of the disease in 13 patients for whom follow-up measurements were available; measurement of these markers, however, is only useful in a small proportion of patients with metastatic renal cell carcinoma.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6-10
Number of pages5
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1991
Externally publishedYes


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