IMR Press / EJGO / Volume 42 / Issue 4 / DOI: 10.31083/j.ejgo4204114
Open Access Original Research

Relationship between 17β estradiol (17βE) levels and Catechol -O- methyltransferase (COMT) levels in ovarian cancers

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1 Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Faculty of Medicine, Alexandria University, 21526 Alexandria, Egypt
2 Department of Pathology, Medical Research Institute, Alexandria University, 21526 Alexandria, Egypt
3 Department of Physiology, Medical Research Institute, Alexandria University, 21526 Alexandria, Egypt
4 Department of Immunology and Allergy, Medical Research Institute, Alexandria University, 21561 Alexandria, Egypt
Eur. J. Gynaecol. Oncol. 2021, 42(4), 757–762;
Submitted: 24 December 2020 | Revised: 27 January 2021 | Accepted: 17 February 2021 | Published: 15 August 2021

Objectives: Epidemiological data show that induction of ovarian cancer is related to estrogen exposure and metabolism. In addition catechol metabolites of estrogen also contribute to carcinogenesis. O methylation by Catechol -O- methyltransferase is a phase II metabolic inactivation pathway for catechol estrogens. The goal of this study was to evaluate a potential correlation between COMT and 17β estradiol levels and ovarian cancer. Subjects and methods: COMT and 17βE levels were measured in ovarian tissue and serum from 80 subjects: 30 with malignant ovarian tumors, 30 with benign ovarian tumors and 20 healthy controls. Results: Tissue and serum levels of Catechol -O- methyltransferase and 17β estradiol were determined using enzyme linked immunosorbant assay. According to our results Catechol -O- methyltransferase inhibition in the malignant group was associated with high levels of 17β estradiol, while in benign group high levels of COMT was associated with low levels of 17β estradiol in both serum and tissue homogenates. Conclusions: Low level of COMT and high tissue/serum levels of 17β estradiol may be contributory factors for the development of ovarian cancer. This supports the notion that targeting the metabolism of estrogen can be another way to reduce ovarian cancer risk.

Ovarian cancer
Catechol -O- methyltransferase
17β estradiol (E2)
Fig. 1.
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