Aim: We assessed the suitability of a biomarker panel to improve early detection and individual risk assessment in breast cancer (BC) patients. Materials & methods: PENK, pro-SP, hGH and CA15-3 of 204 BC patients and 68 healthy controls were measured. Results: PENK and human growth hormone concentrations were significantly lower and pro-SP values higher in BC patients compared with controls. C-index increased from 0.628 for CA15-3 alone to 0.754 when all three biomarkers were added to the model. Conclusion: This biomarker panel may improve early detection of BC and influence the assessment of breast imaging. It might be useful for a risk-adapted cancer surveillance or primary prevention program by a more precise determination of an individualized BC risk.
Keywords: CA15-3; biomarkers; breast cancer; early detection; enkephalin; human growth hormone; mammographic screening; substance-P.