Table of Contents
ISRN Obstetrics and Gynecology
Volume 2012, Article ID 245756, 11 pages
Review Article

Prognostic Significance of Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Serum Determination in Women with Ovarian Cancer

1Division of Gynecologic Oncology, “Angelo Nocivelli” Institute of Molecular Medicine, University of Brescia, 25123 Brescia, Italy
2Department of Clinical Pathology, Regional Center for Biomarkers, Azienda ULSS 12, 30122 Venice, Italy
3Department of Biomedical Sciences and Biotechnology, Medical Statistics Unit, University of Brescia, 25123 Brescia, Italy
4Istituto Oncologico Veneto IOV-IRCCS, 35128 Padova, Italy
5Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06511, USA

Received 20 February 2012; Accepted 3 April 2012

Academic Editors: E. Ginsburg and Y. S. Song

Copyright © 2012 Elisabetta Bandiera et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Introduction. We performed a review of the literature to elucidate the potential prognostic significance of serum vascular endothelial growth factor (sVEGF) levels in ovarian cancer. Methods. Eligible studies in English and Italian were identified in MEDLINE/PubMed from VEGF discovery to October 2011. All studies evaluating: (i) sVEGF levels before any surgical and chemotherapeutic treatment; (ii) the association between sVEGF levels and the established prognostic variables; (iii) the value of sVEGF levels in predicting patients’ outcomes, were selected for this review. Results. The search resulted in 758 titles. Nine studies met the inclusion criteria. A statistically significant association between the level of sVEGF and FIGO stage, tumour grade, residual tumour size, lymph node involvement, and presence of ascites was found in at least one study. sVEGF, in comparison with the established prognostic factors, appears to be the best prognostic marker for overall survival, since it stands out as an independent prognostic factor in most of the studies considered. Moreover, sVEGF levels were shown to be independent prognostic factors by 2 out of the 3 studies that considered DFS as an end point. Conclusion. High levels of sVEGF identify a subgroup of patients with higher risk of death and/or recurrence. These patients should be eligible for individually tailored therapeutic interventions.