Bone alkaline phosphatase as a surrogate marker of bone metastasis in gastric cancer patients

Sun Min Lim, Youn Nam Kim, Ki Hyun Park, Beodeul Kang, Hong Jae Chon, Chan Kim, Joo Hoon Kim, Sun Young Rha

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42 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Bone metastasis is relatively uncommon in gastric cancer patients, but its incidence has been rising. Early detection of bone metastasis is important in preventing complications related to bone metastasis such as pain, fracture and the compromise of chemotherapy. In this pilot study, we investigated the feasibility of bone turnover markers as surrogate markers of bone metastasis in gastric cancer patients. Methods: Fifty-eight patients with gastric cancer were included in this study. Serum levels of bone alkaline phosphatase (ALP), parathyroid hormone (PTH), 25(OH) D, osteocalcin (OC) and C terminal telopeptide were measured and compared between patients with bone metastasis and those without. Student's t-test and Mann-Whitney U test were used in comparing two groups, and Spearman's rank order correlation coefficient was calculated to quantify the strength of the associations. Results: Fifty eight age- and sex-matched patients were evaluated for bone turnover markers, among whom 29 patients had bone metastasis and 29 patients with no bone metastasis. The median age was 62 and there were 20 (68.9 %) males and 9 (31.1 %) females in each group. Bone ALP was significantly higher in the patient group (57.32 ± 46.83 vs. 34.57± 21.57, P = 0.037) than control group. Bone ALP was positively associated with ALP, osteocalcin, CA19-9, CA 72-4 and negatively associated with 25(OH) D. According to ROC-curve analysis, at the threshold value of 29.60 μg/L, the sensitivity of bone ALP was 76.7 % and the specificity was 59.4 %. Conclusion: Bone ALP may be a surrogate marker of bone metastasis in gastric cancer patients. More prospective studies are warranted to determine the optimal bone turnover markers in the evaluation of bone metastasis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number385
JournalBMC cancer
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Jul 4

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by a grant from the National R&D Program for Cancer Control, Ministry of Health and Welfare, Republic of Korea (1520190).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 The Author(s).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Genetics
  • Cancer Research


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