Prognostic effect of serum and tissue YKL-40 levels in bladder cancer

Stephan Tschirdewahn, Henning Reis, Christian Niedworok, Peter Nyirady, Attila Szendröi, Kurt W. Schmid, Shahrokh F. Shariat, Gero Kramer, Frank Vom Dorp, Herbert Rübben, Tibor Szarvas

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15 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: YKL-40 is a novel inflammatory serum protein shown to be associated with the presence and prognosis of several malignancies. However, its prognostic relevance has not yet been analyzed in bladder cancer (BC). Therefore, the aim of this study was to assess the tissue, serum, and urinary levels of YKL-40 and their prognostic value in BC. Methods and materials: YKL-40 gene expression levels were analyzed in frozen tissue samples of 91 patients with BC; YKL-40 concentrations were measured in 120 serum (101 patients with BC and 19 controls) and 154 urine samples (125 patients with BC and 29 controls). In 16 cases, corresponding serum samples collected before and after radical cystectomy were analyzed for YKL-40. Results were correlated with clinicopathological parameters and follow-up data. Results: YKL-40 gene expressions and serum concentrations were higher in patients with BC compared with controls; however, urinary YKL-40 levels remained under the detection limit in both patients and controls. Higher tissue gene expressions and serum concentrations were associated with poor patients' survival in the univariable analysis (P = 0.037 and 0.022, respectively), but only high YKL-40 serum levels proved to be independent prognostic factors in BC (hazard ratio = 1.755, 95% CI: 1.014-3.039, P = 0.045). We found no significant difference between preoperative and postoperative serum concentrations of YKL-40. Conclusions: YKL-40 serum levels are associated with the presence of BC and poor patients' survival. The independent prognostic relevance of YKL-40 is of particular interest in patients with muscle-invasive BC treated with radical surgery. Our data suggest that BC tissue is not the main source of serum YKL-40 levels.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)663-669
Number of pages7
JournalUrologic Oncology: Seminars and Original Investigations
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2014



  • Bladder cancer
  • Inflammation
  • Prognosis
  • Serum
  • Urine
  • YKL-40

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Urology

Cite this

Tschirdewahn, S., Reis, H., Niedworok, C., Nyirady, P., Szendröi, A., Schmid, K. W., Shariat, S. F., Kramer, G., Vom Dorp, F., Rübben, H., & Szarvas, T. (2014). Prognostic effect of serum and tissue YKL-40 levels in bladder cancer. Urologic Oncology: Seminars and Original Investigations, 32(5), 663-669.