Significance of transforming growth factor β1 as a new tumor marker for colorectal cancer

Shin Narai, Masahiko Watanabe, Hirotoshi Hasegawa, Hideki Nishibori, Takashi Endo, Tetsuro Kubota, Masaki Kitajima

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51 Citations (Scopus)


Transforming growth factor β1 (TGF-β1) is thought to be involved in cancer growth and progression. TGF-β1 changes to its active form after being secreted in its latent form. Our aim was to clarify the significance of plasma concentrations of active and total TGF-β1 of patients with colorectal cancer. Plasma concentrations of active and total TGF-β1 in 45 patients with colorectal cancer and 23 healthy volunteers were measured using ELISA and the activation rate (ratio of active to total TGF-β1) was determined. Plasma concentrations of active TGF-β1 (21.9 ± 12.8 pg/ml) were significantly higher in patients with colorectal cancer than in healthy volunteers (9.9 ± 5.9 pg/ml; p < 0.001, Welch's t-test). Concentration of total TGF-β1 was also significantly higher for patients with colorectal cancer (18.0 ± 13.0 ng/ml vs. 11.1 ± 6.4 ng/ml; p < 0.01, Welch's t-test). However, there was no significant difference in the TGF->1 activation rate between the 2 groups. There was a correlation between Dukes' stage and plasma concentration of active or total TGF-β1 (p < 0.01, Spearman's rank correlation test) and on day 7 the active TGF-β1 levels for patients recovering from curative resection were similar to those of the control group of healthy volunteers. These results suggest that active TGF-β1 might be used as a tumor marker for colorectal cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)508-511
Number of pages4
JournalInternational Journal of Cancer
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2002 Feb 1
Externally publishedYes


  • Colorectal cancer
  • Dukes' stage
  • Growth factor
  • Transforming growth factor β1
  • Tumor marker

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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