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Tumor markers — Norm and the interpretation of the results of the tumor marker AFP, table

Tumor markers are the method of modern diagnostics, which are used in the diagnosis of cancer.

There are a number of oncospecific proteins, antigens and substances (for example, tumor marker AFP), which may be associated with malignant tumors. This may be a situation when the tumor markers are in the range of values of the norm, but the disease is the result to be discovered.

In other words, in the early stages of cancer are only some of the cancer-specific indicators, may have increased values, with increase often results in a number of other reasons.

What to look for when testing for cancer

Tumor markers for diagnosis only apply in conjunction with other clinical data and for the most part for pre-screening of the disease or monitoring treatment.

The improvement may be caused by certain physiological condition. What, for example, specific proteins characteristic of malignant lesions of the ovaries and breast, which increases during the critical days.

It is very important in preparation for the analysis of tumor markers to follow all the necessary recommendations, which are published on the websites of the laboratories offering services. The implementation of the recommendations will help to obtain a confidence score.

If you want to learn in detail professional information on "tumor markers and oncospecific substance – what is it?", see description oncospecific proteins in any international lab in your city. In the pricing section of the tests given names, especially the preparation and analysis of accurate medical description that allows to have a precise idea about the designated test.

The concept of tumor marker and its features

The performance of most tumor markers are used in modern medicine for the diagnosis of cancer.

In most cases, they represent a specific protein structure, substance, or antigen, their high content in the studied patient sample may indicate the presence of a malignant process. Meanwhile, it is not always the case.

For example, often used in surveys and marker of cancer-embryonic protein (CEA) may be elevated in benign changes of the cells.

Oncomarker CA – 125, which is used to evaluate tumors of the ovary, rises during the critical days and in some reproductive pathologies. As a tumor marker metastases often used bone phosphatase, however, this analysis makes only a limited number of laboratories, and the increase in alkaline phosphatase can be caused by lesions of the digestive tract, and, for example, pregnancy.

Typically, highly elevated tumor markers in human blood is characteristic of the pronounced stages of cancer. On the first and second stage are often observed normative data.

In some cases, tokens may not rise, therefore, to assess the risk of presence of cancer in the survey used several specific proteins and substances, the analysis of the content in the patient sample which will give a more accurate picture and risk assessment.

Tumor markers as relative indicators of risk of cancer

In other words, the tumor markers are relative indicators of an estimation of probability of cancer.

The final diagnosis can be made after CT, MRI, biopsy, or sampling of histology of tissue sample.

Please note that it is very important the accurate diagnosis of the disease, to carry out a correct planning of the surgical intervention. As elevated and normal result of the blood test for tumor markers will not give an accurate answer about the presence of cancer. While specific proteins are often used to track the dynamics of cancer treatment.

Where to donate tumor markers and know the details of the norm?

Norms of many tumor markers depend on the method and test system used in your chosen lab. Information on the range of values of tumor markers would be contained in the results of the analysis, which will be given to the patient in the laboratory. Typically, the value ranges specified in the adjacent column, next to the result of the patient.

When high performance graph further indicated by a special mark.

If you use the value of the selected tumor markers as estimatesown health condition, for accuracy it is better to take the tests when using the same methods and test systems.

Reference data of tumor markers can be obtained in the laboratory or directly on the official website.

Normative and increased values of tumor markers

Our review highlights the normative results of some tumor markers and test systems that are commonly used for the evaluation. Please again note that both regulatory and higher do not allow to draw accurate conclusions about the presence or absence of cancer.

Tumor markers to determine the type of tumors, and that it is better to understand the examples. Which indicators should determine in each particular case, you need to ask the doctor.

Tumor markers of epithelial ovarian cancer HE4 (test system ARCHITECT)

Normative value:

  1. the premenopausal women: less than 70 pmol/l, less than 7.4%,
  2. postmenopausal: less than 140 pmol/l, less than 7.4%.

Tumor marker used to clarify the nature of the tumors in the uterus before surgery.

HE4 is used only for probabilities, but not the exact diagnosis. Moreover, normal levels of HE4 can also be a characteristic for women with cancer lesions of the epithelium, due to the fact that some types of cancer ovarian tumors rarely secrete this protein, but occurs during germ cell and mucoid tumors.

There is also evidence of the increase in this protein have not women patients as well as patients with other types of tumors (gastrointestinal, breast, endometrium etc.).

The carbohydrate antigen CA 72-4: to assess the likelihood of cancer of the digestive tract and other tumors

Normative value: < At 6.9 U/ml.

This indicator is used for additional assessment of the probability of malignant lesions of the reproductive organs, digestive tract and lungs. Elevated values may be typical for oncological diseases of the liver, colon intestine, stomach and pancreas, benign and malignant tumors.

The growth of values of this carbohydrate antigen may be observed in patients with rheumatism and cirrhosis, as well as those suffering from pancreatitis.

Transcript of most tumor markers can be done on the basis of a combination of test results, MRI and CT. The tumor marker CA 72-4 is used for a prognostic test of probability of malignant lesions of organs.

The carbohydrate antigen CA 15-3: estimated probability of breast cancer

Normative value: <, And 26.9 U/ml (healthy women outside of pregnancy).

The tumor marker CA 15-3 sharp changes in various brain female breast. A high level typical of the last stages of malignant diseases with metastases. This carbohydrate antigen is increased in carcinoma of bronchus, breast, oncological lesions of the reproductive organs and the digestive tract.

Also higher values are typical of a benign process of breast (50 u/ml), a marker increased in the third trimester of pregnancy (up to 50 u/ml). This test is used in conjunction with the definition of REA.

The carbohydrate antigen CA-125: assessing the risk of ovarian cancer

Normative value: <, 35 U/ml.

CA-125 tumor marker increases with the number of somatic diseases and cancer of various organs. The accuracy of this parameter for the ovary equal to 80%.

In the absence of lesions of the ovaries and the increase in this antigen should test for neoplasms of the following organs: the reproductive organs of the female, the organs of the gastrointestinal tract, lungs. With somatic diseases is often a small increase in antigen: cyst reproductive organs, endometriosis, chronic liver damage, autoimmune disorders, etc.

The carbohydrate antigen CA 242: assessing the risk of cancer pathology of the digestive tract (test system Fujirebio, method ECLIA)

Normative value: <, 29,0 U/ml.

The carbohydrate antigen CA 242 is used to assess the likelihood of cancer and lesions of the digestive tract. Observed in colorectal cancer, tumors of the pancreas, cancer of the stomach. In 5-33% of cases may grow in benign tumors of the digestive tract.

The carbohydrate antigen CA 19-9: the test for squamous cell carcinoma

Normative value: <, 37 U/ml.

An increase in the level of this tumor marker in 70-100% of cases observed for cancer pathology of the pancreas. Increased values may indicate the presence of cancer of the liver and gall bladder, to 51% of cases. In some cases there is growth of the tumor marker in cancer of other organs of the gastrointestinal tract, cancer pathology and lesions of the female reproductive organs. Also the carbohydrate antigen CA 19-9 increases with gallstones, serious liver damage and other diseases.

Prostate-specific antigen: assessing the risk of prostate

Normative values (for men):

  • to 40 years: to 1.4,
  • 40-50 years old: up to 2.0,
  • 50-60 years: up to 3.1,
  • 60-70 years old: 4.1,
  • over 70 years of age: up to 4.4.

Antigen used to assess the condition of the prostate, increases in all types of lesions — inflammatory and benign, is growing especially in malignant cancer process.

Microglobulin in urine Beta 2

Standard value: 0 to 300 ng.

Microglobulin in urine Beta 2 in clinical practice is increasing. In some cases, it can be observed in tumor kidney damage. Tests of Beta 2 microglobulin are often made in the treatment process. Increase the case for somenonneoplastic diseases of the kidneys and at the rejection of the renal graft.

Alpha-fetoprotein: tumor marker liver

Normative values of 0.90 is 6.67 u/ml (men and nonpregnant women).

Tumor markers AFP is used as a test value to evaluate the level of serum fetal protein that is produced in the embryonic period.

In adults and non-pregnant women the value is consistently and significantly less than infants and pregnant women.

The growth of alfafetoproteina can be observed in malignancies and is observed in cancer of the liver. Also increase can occur in benign tumors.

Cancer-embryonic antigen

Normative value: <,5 ng/ml, non-Smoking, Smoking could rise to 10 ng/ml.

The tumor marker CEA test is used to assess the likelihood of the cancer process. This antigen is produced only in the embryonic period, but can be increased in a number of diseases, and for benign and malignant processes. A significant increase of the marker is observed at 2-3 stage of the cancer.

β-HCG generic: human chorionic gonadotropin to determine horiokartsinom (test system Cobas 6000 method ECLIA)

Normative value:

  1. women (non-pregnant): < With 1.0 IU/l,
  2. women (postmenopausal): < A 7.0 IU/l,
  3. menfolk: < To 2.0 IU/L.

The marker refers to a group of glycoprotein hormones, a significant increase is observed during pregnancy pathology (usernam skidding) and choriocarcinoma, and in some cases of tumors that can occur in the ovaries and testes. Analysis informative for pregnant women in the period up to 4 weeks.

Neuron-specific enolase specific: to determine neuroendocrine tumors (test system Cobas 6000 method ECLIA)

Normative value: <, 16,3 ng/ml.

Used for diagnosis of neuroendocrine tumors and recurrence monitoring of the disease, determination of metastases. Is increased only in some tumors of neuroendocrine origin. The figure is also growing in a number of diseases of the nervous system.

The cytokeratins Cyfra 21-1: to determine the lung cancer, uterus and bladder (test system Cobas 6000 method ECLIA)

Normative value: <, 3.3 ng/ml.

The token is a structural protein that is used for non-invasive diagnosis of tumors of lung and non small cell lung cancer, uterus and bladder. Can rise in benign lesions of the liver, lung, renal insufficiency and Smoking.

The tumor marker protein (protein) S-100 to identify malignant melanoma of the skin (test system Cobas 6000 method ECLIA)

Normative value: <, 0,105 µg/L.

Protein S-100 is used as a prognostic indicator in trauma of the brain, and to identify malignant melanoma of the skin. May increase during strong physical exertion, Alzheimer's disease, various inflammatory diseases.


Please note that to determine the diseases of tumor markers decryption can be done only by a qualified physician or oncologist.

For diagnosis uses a number of relative and absolute indicators and methods qualitative evaluation of tumors, for example, CT and MRI. For initial assessment of disease risk you can use regular common and the blood test.

Malignancy usually contributes to a significant increase in fibrinogen and erythrocyte sedimentation rate. The increase in alkaline phosphatase in the presence of tumor may indicate metastases, while this indicator is relative, because the substance has a protective role in the digestive tract and increases with number of somatic diseases.

Integrated assessment of cancer risk are bundled in sets of tumor markers, presented in the form of cancer panels. On the methods of integrated assessment can be found on the website of the chosen laboratory.

Keep in mind that the list oncospecific tests is much broader. Private laboratories offer sending tests Japan or Germany. In Russia there are also several high-tech labs that can do accurate estimation of the probability of the disease.

The accuracy of the analysis depends on the test system, the largest medical supply manufacturers. For accurate monitoring of tumor marker you want to match the method of assessment.