M2-PK in the blood as a tumour marker for renal cell carcinoma, seminomas and other testicular tumours

General and pathogenesis
In anaerobic glycolysis, the step from phosphoenolpyruvate to pyruvate requires an active, tetrameric form of pyruvate kinase. In tumour cells, the tetrameric shape of pyruvate phosphorylation changes to a monomeric or dimeric form with low affinity towards phosphoenolpyruvate. This isoenzyme tumour M2 of pyruvate kinase (M2-PK) can be measured in tissue fluids and, according to various studies, can be used as a tumour marker.

Diagnostics
M2-PK is a useful supplement in clinical-chemical diagnostics when there are suspicions of renal cell cancer, colon and gastric cancer, seminomas and other testicular tumours. M2-PK can also be used for monitoring treatment or for early detection of metastasis and/or a relapse. Here, there is a highly specific correlation between the M2-PK concentration in the tumours and the malignancy of the tumours. Depending on the stage categorisation (Robson stage), testing has a specificity of > 90% and a sensitivity of 35 % to 100 %. In addition to the area of application in urology, studies also show its suitability as a tumour marker in lung cancer, regardless of the histological type, whereby in this case the plasma concentration is also closely correlated with the tumour stage. Compared to other cancer markers, M2-PK has proven to be equivalent or even superior, including in pancreatic cancer.

Test material
Only EDTA plasma

The blood sample must be centrifuged on the same day that it is taken.
Afterwards, it can be kept for 12 hours at room temperature or for 2 days at 4 ºC.
At -20 °C, its shelf life is 1 year.

Reference range
Results: The reference concentration is < 15 U/ml

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