Serum Levels of Trace Elements in Patients with Testicular Cancers
Yuksel, Mehmet Bilgehan
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Introduction: Trace elements are primary components of biological structures; however, they can be toxic when their concentrations are higher than those needed for biological functions. Materials and Methods: In the present study serum levels of trace elements were measured in 30 patients (mean age was 26.9 +/- 11.2 years) newly diagnosed with germ cell testicular cancer and 32 healthy volunteers (mean age: 27.4 +/- 10.8) by using furnace atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Serum samples were stored at-20 degrees C until assays. Results: In patients with germ cell testicular cancer, the diagnosis was seminoma in 15, mix germ cell tumor in 7, embryonal carcinoma in 4, yolk sac tumor in 2 and teratoma in 2 patients. There was stage I testicular tumor in 19 patients (63.3%) while stage II in 6 patients (20.0%), stage IIIA in 4 patients (13.3%) and stage IIIC in one patient (3.4%). It was found that serum Co, Cu, Mg and Pb levels were increased (p<0.05), whereas Fe, Mn, and Zn levels were decreased in patients with testicular cancer (p<0.05). Conclusions: These alterations may be important in the pathogenesis of testicular cancers; however, further prospective studies are needed to identify the relationship between testicular cancer and trace elements.