Comparison of Serum Fucose Levels in Leukoplakia and Oral Cancer Patients

  • Rai, Narendra Prakash (Department of Oral Medicine & Radiology, Lincoln's University College) ;
  • Anekar, Jayaprasad (KVG Dental College & Hospital Sullia) ;
  • Shivaraja, Shankara YM (Department of Biochemistry, KVG Medical College & Hospital Sullia) ;
  • Divakar, Darshan Devang (Dental Biomaterials Research Chair, College of Applied Medical Sciences, King Saud University) ;
  • Al Kheraif, Abdulaziz Abdullah (Dental Biomaterials Research Chair, College of Applied Medical Sciences, King Saud University) ;
  • Ramakrishnaiah, Ravikumar (Dental Biomaterials Research Chair, College of Applied Medical Sciences, King Saud University) ;
  • Sebastian, Roopa (Department of Biochemistry, KVG Medical College & Hospital Sullia) ;
  • Raj, AC (KVG Dental College & Hospital Sullia) ;
  • Al-Hazmi, Ali (Department of Family & Community Medicine, King Saud University) ;
  • Mustafa, habil Mohamed (Malabar Dental College and Research Centre)
  • Published : 2015.12.03


Background: Tumor markers, designated as a broad group of substances produced by malignancies, could be in the form of biochemical substances, immunological substances, cell surface changes and genetic alterations. Cancer, a disorder of cellular behavior is characterized by alteration of serum glycoproteins. L-fucose, a hexose, which is the terminal sugar in most of the plasma glycoproteins, may be useful as a tumor marker for the detection, monitoring and prognostic assessment of malignancies. The aim of the study was to ascertain the role of serum fucose as a biomarker for early detection of oral cancer and to compare serum fucose levels in healthy controls, leukoplakia and oral cancer patients. Materials and Methods: The study included 60 (100.0%) subjects, who were grouped as 20 (33.3%) control subjects, 20 (33.3%) squamous cell carcinoma patients and 20 (33.3%) leukoplakia patients. Fucose estimation was done using UV-visible spectrophotometry based on the method as adopted by Winzler using cysteine reagent. The results were analyzed statistically using ANOVA with Bonferroni post hoc tests. Results: Results showed a high significance in serum fucose in oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) and leukoplakia subjects compared to normal controls. There was a gradual increase in the values noted from control to leukoplakia and to squamous cell carcinoma. Conclusions: Estimation of serum fucose may be a reliable marker and can be used as an effective diagnostic biomarker in oral squamous cell carcinoma patients.


Cancer;leukoplakia;oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC);serum fucose


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