Introduction: Recent large epidemiologic population-based studies identified gamma-glutamyltransferase (GGT) as a marker for increased cervical cancer incidence. Furthermore, high levels of GGT seem to increase the risk of progression of high-grade cervical dysplasia to invasive carcinoma. Therefore, we evaluated the association between pre-therapeutic serum GGT levels, tumor stage and prognosis in patients with cervical cancer.
Materials and methods: In this multi-center trial, pre-therapeutic GGT levels were examined in 692 patients with cervical cancer. GGT levels were correlated with clinico-pathological parameters. Patients were assigned to previously described GGT risk groups and uni- and multivariable survival analyses were performed.
Results: GGT serum levels were associated with FIGO stage (p<0.0001) and age (r=0.2, p<0.0001) but not with lymph node involvement (p=0.85), and histological type (p=0.98). High-risk GGT group affiliation (p=0.01 and p<0.0001) was associated with poor disease-free and overall survival in a univariate analysis, but not in a multivariable Cox-regression model (p=0.59 and p=0.171). We further investigated the association between prognosis and GGT and observed a linear correlation between GGT and prognosis. Therefore we were not able to identify a clear prognostic cut-off value for GGT in patients with cervical cancer.
Conclusions: High GGT--a marker for apoptosis and cervical cancer risk--is associated with advanced tumor stage in patients with cervical cancer.
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