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Mediation Analysis Reveals Potential Biological Mechanism of Ascites Influencing Recurrence in Patients with Epithelial Ovarian Cancer

Authors Yang C, Wang C, Rong Z, Xu Z, Deng K, Zhao W, Cao L, Lu Y, Adnan H, Li K, Hou Y

Received 24 September 2019

Accepted for publication 28 December 2019

Published 4 February 2020 Volume 2020:12 Pages 793—799


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Yong Teng

Chunyan Yang, Ce Wang, Zhiwei Rong, Zhenyi Xu, Kui Deng, Weiwei Zhao, Lei Cao, Yaxin Lu, Humara Adnan, Kang Li, Yan Hou

Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Public Health School, Harbin Medical University, Harbin, People’s Republic of China

Correspondence: Kang Li
Tel +86-451-87502939
Fax +86-451-87202885

Yan Hou
Tel +86-451-87502645
Fax +86-451-87202885

Objective: Ascites, an accumulation of peritoneal fluid, is associated with poor prognosis of certain cancers. The potential mechanism that ascites worsens prognosis has not been well understood. Lipids have been reported to correlate with the prognosis of patients with epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC). Therefore, we aimed here to investigate whether lipids mediate the effect of ascites on the recurrence of EOC.
Methods: We collected the demographic and pathological data of 437 previously untreated patients with EOC to investigate the influence of ascites on recurrence. To identify the mechanism that mediates the potential influence of ascites on recurrence, we used ultra-performance liquid chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS) to determine the plasma lipid profiles of 53 patients with EOC. We used mediation analysis to evaluate if lipids mediated the effects of ascites on the recurrence of EOC.
Results: Patients with ascites had a poorer prognosis, which was associated with higher levels of carbohydrate antigen-CA125 (CA125) and FIGO stage. We identified six different lipid metabolites that were associated with ascites and recurrence. Mediation analysis revealed that the lipids LysoPC(P-15:0), PC(P-34:4), and PC(38:6) may mediate the effects of ascites on recurrence.
Conclusion: Our findings suggest that LysoPC(P-15:0), PC(P-34:4), and PC(38:6) mediate the effect of ascites on the prognosis of patients with EOC. We believe therefore that it is reasonable to consider metabolic interventions targeting the metabolism of LysoPC(P-15:0), PC(P-34:4), and PC(38:6) as a palliative treatment for patients with EOC with ascites. Further studies of more patients will be required to validate our findings.

Keywords: ascites, recurrence, mediation analysis, lipids, epithelial ovarian cancer

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