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Sensors 2011, 11(12), 11064-11080; doi:10.3390/s111211064

Serological Thymidine Kinase 1 is a Biomarker for Early Detection of Tumours—A Health Screening Study on 35,365 People, Using a Sensitive Chemiluminescent Dot Blot Assay

1
Healthy Centre of the Third XiangYa Hospital, ZhongNan University, ChangSha 410013, China
2
Healthy Centre of the Affiliated Second Hospital, Fujian Chinese Tradition Medicine University, Fuzhou 350108, China
3
Jilin Oil Field General Hospital, Jilin 131106, China
4
Department of Clinical and Laboratory Medicine, Nanjing 81 Hospital, Jiangsu 210002, China
5
Department of Clinical and Laboratory Medicine, Nanjing Tumor Hospital, Nanjing 210011, China
6
Department of Clinical and Laboratory Medicine, Zhejiang Cancer Hospital, Hangzhou 310022, China
7
Laboratory of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Research, Fujian Cancer Hospital of Fujian Medical University Teaching Hospital, Fuzhou 350014, China
8
Chinese Medicine Hospital, Guangdong 510120, China
9
Central Laboratory, Cancer Institute & Hospital, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences (CAMS), Beijing 100021, China
10
Sino-Swedish Molecular Bio-Medicine Research Institute, Shenzhen 518057, China
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 September 2011 / Revised: 30 October 2011 / Accepted: 22 November 2011 / Published: 28 November 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomarkers and Nanosensors: New Approaches for Biology and Medicine)
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Abstract

Serological thymidine kinase 1 (STK1) is a reliable proliferation marker for prognosis, monitoring tumour therapy, and relapse. Here we investigated the use of STK1 in health screening for early detection of pre-malignant and malignant diseases. The investigation was based on 35,365 participants in four independent health screening studies in China between 2005–2011. All participants were clinically examined. The concentration of STK1 was determined by a sensitive chemiluminescent dot blot ECL assay. The ROCvalue of the STK1 assay was 0.96. At a cut-off STK1 value of 2.0 pM, the likelihood (+) value was 236.5, and the sensitivity and the specificity were 0.78 and 0.99, respectively. The relative number of city-dwelling people with elevated STK1 values (≥2.0 pM) was 0.8% (198/26,484), while the corresponding value for the group of oil-field workers was 5.8% (514/8,355). The latter group expressed significantly higher frequency of refractory anaemia, fatty liver, and obesity, compared to the city dwellers, but no cases of breast hyperplasia or prostate hyperplasia. Furthermore, people working in oil drilling/oil transportation showed higher STK1 values and higher frequency of pre-malignancies and benign diseases than people working in the oil-field administration. In the STK1 elevated group of the city-dwelling people, a statistically significantly higher number of people were found to have malignancies, pre-malignancies of all types, moderate/severe type of hyperplasia of breast or prostate, or refractory anaemia, or to be at high risk for hepatitis B, compared to people with normal STK1 values (< 2.0 pM). No malignancies were found in the normal STK1 group. In the elevated STK1 group 85.4% showed diseases linked to a higher risk for pre-/early cancerous progression, compared to 52.4% of those with normal STK1 values. Among participants with elevated STK1 values, 8.8% developed new malignancies or progress in their pre-malignancies within 5 to 72 months, compared to 0.2% among people with normal STK1 values. People who showed elevated STK1 values were at about three to five times higher risk to develop malignancies compared to a calculated risk based on a cancer incidence rate of 0.2–0.3%. We conclude that serological TK1 protein concentration is a reliable marker for risk assessment of pre/early cancerous progression.
Keywords: thymidine kinase 1; health screening; pre-malignancy; malignancy; biomarker; tumour marker thymidine kinase 1; health screening; pre-malignancy; malignancy; biomarker; tumour marker
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Chen, Z.H.; Huang, S.Q.; Wang, Y.; Yang, A.Z.; Wen, J.; Xu, X.H.; Chen, Y.; Chen, Q.B.; Wang, Y.H.; He, E.; Zhou, J.; Skog, S. Serological Thymidine Kinase 1 is a Biomarker for Early Detection of Tumours—A Health Screening Study on 35,365 People, Using a Sensitive Chemiluminescent Dot Blot Assay. Sensors 2011, 11, 11064-11080.

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