Elevated plasma YKL-40 is a biomarker of poor prognosis in cancer patients.
Dr Julia Johansen and colleagues from Denmark tested the hypotheses that elevated plasma YKL-40 predicts risk of cancer as well as survival after a cancer diagnosis in the general population.
The team conducted a prospective cohort study of 8,899 subjects from the Danish general population, the Copenhagen City Heart Study.
The research team observed the cohort for 11 years for cancer incidence, and 14 years for death.
The team found that 1432 participants had a first incident cancer, and 968 of these died.
|Adjusted hazard ratios for early death was 2.4 after gastrointestinal cancer with high YKL-40 |
|Journal of Clinical Oncology|
Hazard ratios for cancer events and death after events according to plasma YKL-40 in sex and 10 years age percentile categories were 0% to 33%, 34% to 66%, 67% to 90%, 91% to 95%, and 96% to 100%.
The researchers found that the cumulative incidence of gastrointestinal cancer increased with increasing YKL-40 levels.
Multifactorially adjusted hazard ratios for gastrointestinal cancer were 1.0 for YKL-40 in category 34% to 66%, 1.5 for 67% to 90%, 2.4 for 91% to 95%, and 3.4 for 96% to 100% vs YKL-40 category 0% to 33%.
The team found that participants with any cancer event, and YKL-40 category 91% to 100% had a median survival time after the diagnosis of 1 year versus 4 years in participants with YKL-40 category 0% to 33%.
Multifactorially adjusted hazard ratios for early death were 1.8 after any cancer and 2.4 after gastrointestinal cancer in participants with YKL-40 category 91% to 100% versus 0% to 33%.
Dr Johansen’s team concluded, “In the general population, elevated plasma YKL-40 predicts increased risk of gastrointestinal cancer and decreased survival after any cancer diagnosis.”