Serum Granulocyte Macrophage-Colony Stimulating Factor: a Tumor Marker in Colorectal Carcinoma?


Background/Aims: Granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) is a hematopoietic growthfactor, 23 kDA molecular weight with a glycoprotein nature, which is also an immune modulator. The levels ofGM-CSF and its role in the pathophysiology of several cancers such as ovarian, breast have been investigated.The aim of the present study was to determine the effect of GM-CSF and carcinoembryogenic antigen levels inpredicting survival. Methodology: Plasma levels of GM-CSF were measured in 51 patients with previouslyuntreated colorectal cancer patients and 21 healthy adults as normal controls. The clinicopathological featuresof colorectal carcinoma were determined at the time of blood collection. Patient staging were done according totumor-node-metastasis (TNM) by American Joint Commission on Cancer (AJCC).
Results: Plasma concentrationsof GM-CSF in colorectal cancer patients (42.0 pg/ml) were statistically significant higher than normal controls(23.2 pg/ml) (p=0,001). Statistically significant correlation was not determined between pretreatment GM-CSFlevels and overall survival. On the other hand, stage of disease, carcinoembryogenic antigen and peripheralleukocyte counts were not correlated with GM-CSF levels.
Conclusions: This is the first report in which serumlevels of GM-CSF, carcinoembriyogenic and peripheral leukocyte counts have been simultaneously evaluatedin colorectal cancer patients. We found significantly elevated GM-CSF but the results suggested that serumGM-CSF may not be useful for clinical information in prognosis as a tumor marker in colorectal cancer.