Background: Hepatocellular Carcinomas (HCCs) are mostly diagnosed at later stages, necessitating new methods for recognition and investigation of HCC. However, Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) is still an important diagnostic biomarker for HCC, the need for alternate and reliable diagnostic biomarkers are essential.
Objective: This work aimed to evaluate cellular tumor suppressor protein p53 antigen and 5-Methylcytosine (methylated DNA) as biomarkers for the diagnosis of liver cancer in patients in Egypt.
Materials and Methods: This investigation was performed on 90 patients were assigned to three groups; group I (Control group), group II (Cirrhotic group) and group III (HCC group); each contained 30 patients:
Laboratory investigations and abdominal ultrasonography were performed to diagnose liver cirrhosis. However, the HCC diagnosis was performed either percutaneous biopsy or radiologically by abdominal ultrasound and a computed tomography (CT or CAT) scan based on the guidelines of the American-Association for Liver Diseases.
AFP & protein p53 antigen and 5-Methylcytosine (methylated DNA) levels were estimated in all groups.
Results: 5-methylcytosine (5-mC) is 0.894 at cutoff (>1.3%) with a sensitivity (96.67%), a specificity (65%), a positive predictive value (57.46%), and a negative predictive value (97.06%). For the diagnosis of HCC, the area under the curve of P53 was 0.894 at cutoff ≤14.77 pg/ml with a sensitivity (83.33%), a specificity (85%), a positive predictive value (73.16%), and a negative predictive value (91.03%).
Conclusion: Combining both serum 5-mC with P53 may serve as a new biomarker for diagnosis of HCC with a higher sensitivity than AFP.