Chemerin plays an important role in adipogenesis and chemotaxis of the innate immune system. The aim of this study was to explore the significance and prognostic value of serum chemerin levels in patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Serum specimens from 189 NSCLC patients and 120 healthy controls were collected. The levels of serum chemerin were measured by sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The serum chemerin levels were significantly elevated in NSCLC patients compared with healthy controls (P < 0.001). Higher serum chemerin levels were associated with advanced TNM stage, lymph node metastasis, and distant metastasis. Area under receiver operating characteristic curve (ROC) for serum chemerin was 0.809 (95% CI: 0.722-0.896) at a sensitivity of 0.624 and of specificity 0.675. The cut-off value of chemerin was 1500 pg/ml for discriminating NSCLC from healthy controls. Kaplan-Meier log rank analysis revealed that the higher serum chemerin patients had a shorter overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS) compared with lower chemerin patients (P = 0.004, P = 0.001, respectively). Further univariate and multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that serum chemerin was an independent risk factor of prognosis of NSCLC patients. In conclusion, measurement of chemerin might be a useful diagnostic and prognostic biomarker for NSCLC patients.
Keywords: biomarker; chemerin; diagnosis; non-small cell lung cancer; prognosis.