Significance of K-ras mutation and CEA level in pancreatic juice in the diagnosis of pancreatic cancer
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The early diagnosis of pancreatic carcinoma is essential for increasing patient survival rates. In this study, 52 patients with suspected pancreatic diseases were examined to investigate the value of K-ras codon 12 point mutation, levels of carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) and carbohydrate antigen (CA19-9), and cytology of pancreatic juice in the diagnosis of pancreatic carcinoma. Pancreatic juice was taken without secretin stimulation. K-ras mutation was detected by enriched polymerase chain reaction (PCR) restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP). K-ras mutation in pancreatic juice was more frequent in carcinoma than in benign diseases (P = 0.0448). The positive predictive value of K-ras mutation for the diagnosis of neoplastic disease was 83%. The CEA level in pancreatic juice in carcinoma was significantly greater than that in benign disease (P < 0.0001). When the cutoff level of CEA was set at 50 ng/ml, its accuracy for the diagnosis of carcinoma was 85%. A multivariate analysis showed that K-ras mutation and CEA level in pancreatic juice, as well as serum CA19-9 level and age of the patient were independent variables for the diagnosis of carcinoma, and the accuracy of diagnosis by this analysis was increased to 90%. In conclusion, both K-ras mutation and CEA level in pancreatic juice may be valuable for the diagnosis of carcinoma. Better discrimination was possible with a multivariate analysis.
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