Increased serum level of epidermal growth factor receptor in liver cancer patients and its association with exposure to arsenic

Tzu I. Sung, Ying Jan Wang, Chi Yi Chen, Tsui Lien Hung, How Ran Guo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Arsenic is a human carcinogen and can activate epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) in human cell lines. As EGFR is associated with the occurrence of cancers, we conducted a study to evaluate whether serum EGFR may increase in liver cancer patients, particularly in those with exposure to arsenic. We recruited 100 patients of liver cancer and 100 age- and sex-matched controls in Taiwan and determined EGFR levels in sera by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The patients had higher EGFR levels (668.1 vs. 243.1. fmol/mL, p< 0.01), and after adjusting for hepatitis B and C, they still had an average EGFR level 406.1. fmol/mL higher than that of the controls (p< 0.01). When we compared 22 patients residing in an endemic area of arsenic intoxication to 22 age- and sex-matched patients residing outside the area, we found that patients from the endemic area had higher EGFR levels (882.8 vs. 511.6. fmol/mL, p= 0.04). We concluded that EGFR is over-expressed in patients of liver cancer, particularly in those with exposure to arsenic, and therefore, serum EGFR level is not only a potential biomarker of liver cancer, but also a potential biomarker of cancers associated with arsenic exposure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)74-78
Number of pages5
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Volume424
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012 May 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution

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