Biomarkers in Gynecologic Oncology (Dorn Lab)

Principal investigator                                                                                                                                                        

Priv.-Doz. Dr. med. Julia Dorn
Technische Universität München
Tel.: (089) 4140-5445
Fax: (089) 4140-4820

Lab members

      •  Dr. med. Sabine Grill (M.D.)
      •  Sarah Preis (doctoral candidate)
      •  Geng Xiaocong (doctoral candidate)
      •  Liu Yueyang (doctoral candidate)
      •  Elisabeth Schüren (BTA, biobank)

Research background

Clinical relevance of kallikrein-related peptidases (KLK) in breast and ovarian cancer

The family of the kallikrein-related peptidases (KLKs) consists of 15 highly conserved secreted serine proteases. KLKs are expressed in a variety of tissues and control a multitude of (patho-) physiological processes, such as blood pressure regulation, skin desquamation, neuronal development and activation of pro-hormones.

In the cancer research field, the KLK family became well known because of the correlation of KLK3/PSA (prostate-specific antigen) blood levels with prostate cancer. Also in other solid tumours, KLKs are involved in tumorigenesis, cancer progression and metastasis. Depending on the tumour origin, some KLKs can act as a tumour promotor or suppressor. In smaller studies, KLKs have been reported to predict prognosis as well as tumour therapy response in gynaecological tumors and breast cancer. Major focus of our research group (in cooperation with the pathology department of the TU München) is the exploration and validation of the clinical impact of KLK1-15 in ovarian and breast cancer by expression analysis.

Selected publications

Geng X, Liu Y, Diersch S, Kotzsch M, Grill S, Weichert W, Kiechle M, Magdolen V, Dorn J. (2017) Clinical relevance of kallikrein-related peptidase 9, 10, 11, and 15 mRNA expression in advanced high-grade serous ovarian cancer. PLoS One. 12(11)

Yang F, Aubele M, Walch A, Gross E, Napieralski R, Zhao S, Ahmed N, Kiechle M, Reuning U, Dorn J, et al. (2017) Tissue kallikrein-related peptidase 4 (KLK4), a novel biomarker in triple-negative breast cancer. Biol Chem. 398(10):1151-1164

Zhao S, Dorn J, Napieralski R, Walch A, Diersch S, Kotzsch M, Ahmed N, Hooper JD, Kiechle M, Schmitt M Magdolen V (2017) Plasmin(ogen) serves as a favourable biomarker for predicition of survival in advanced high-grade serous ovarian cancer. Biol Chem. 398(7):765-773

Ahmed N, Dorn J, Napieralski R, Drecoll, E, Kotzsch M, Goettig P, Zein E, Avril S, Kiechle M, Diamandis EP, Schmitt M, Magdolen V (2016) Clinical relevance of kallikrein-related peptidase 6 (KLK6) and 8 (KLK8) mRNA expression in advanced serous ovarian cancer. Biol Chem 1;397(12):1265-76

Dorn J, Yassouridis A, Walch A, Diamandis EP, Schmitt M, Kiechle M, Wang P, Drecoll E, Schmalfeldt B, Loessner D, Kotzsch M, Magdolen V (2015) Assessment of kallikrein-related peptidase 5 (KLK5) protein expression in tumor tissue of advanced ovarian cancer patients by immunohistochemistry and ELISA: correlation with clinical outcome. Am J Cancer Res 15;6(1):61-70

Dorn J, Bronger H, Kates R, Slotta-Huspenina J, Schmalfeldt B, Kiechle M, Diamandis EP, Soosaipillai A, Schmitt M, Harbeck N (2015) OVSCORE – a validated score to identify ovarian cancer patients not suitable for primary surgery. Oncol Lett 9(1):418-424

Dorn J, Gkazepis A, Kotzsch M, Kremer M, Propping C, Mayer K, Mengele K, Diamandis EP, Kiechle M, Magdolen V, Schmitt M (2014) Clinical value of protein expression of kallikrein-related peptidase 7 (KLK7) in ovarian cancer. Biol Chem 395(1):95-107

Dorn J, Beaufort N, Schmitt M, Diamandis EP, Goettig P, Magdolen V (2014) Function and clinical relevance of kallikrein-related peptidases and other serine proteases in gynecological cancers. Crit Rev Clin Lab Sci 51:63-84

Dorn J, Bayani J, Yousef GM, Yang F, Magdolen V, Kiechle M, Diamandis EP, Schmitt M (2013) Clinical utility of kallikrein-related peptidases (KLK) in urogenital malignancies. Thromb Haemost 110(3):408-22 

Seiz L, Dorn J, Kotzsch M, Walch A, Grebenchtchikov NI, Gkazepis A, Schmalfeldt B, Kiechle M, Bayani J, Diamandis EP, Langer R, Sweep FC, Schmitt M, Magdolen V (2012) Stromal cell-associated expression of kallikrein-related peptidase 6 (KLK6) indicates poor prognosis of ovarian cancer patients. Biol Chem 393(5):391-401

Kotzsch M, Dorn J, Doetzer K, Schmalfeldt B, Krol J, Baretton G, Kiechle M, Schmitt M, Magdolen V (2011) mRNA expression levels of the biological factors uPAR-del4/5, and rab31, displaying prognostic value in breast cancer, are not clinically relevant in advanced ovarian cancer. Biol Chem 392(11):1047-51

Dorn J, Magdolen V, Gkazepis A, Gerte T, Harlozinska A, Sedlaczek P, Diamandis EP, Schuster T, Harbeck N, Kiechle M, Schmitt M (2011) Circulating biomarker tissue kallikrein-related peptidase KLK5 impacts ovarian cancer patients’ survival. Ann Oncol 22(8):1783-90

Dorn J, Harbeck N, Kates R, Gkazepis A, Scorilas A, Soosaipillai A, Diamandis E, Kiechle M, Schmalfeldt B, Schmitt M (2011) Impact of expression differences of kallikrein-related peptidases and of uPA and PAI-1 between primary tumor and omentum metastasis in advanced ovarian cancer. Ann Oncol 22(4):877-83

Dorn J, Schmitt M, Kates R, Schmalfeldt B, Kiechle M, Scorilas A, Diamandis EP, Harbeck N (2007) Primary tumor levels of human tissue kallikreins affect surgical success and survival in ovarian cancer patients. Clin Cancer Res 13: 1742-8

Dorn J, Harbeck N, Kates R, Magdolen V, Grass L, Soosaipillai A, Schmalfeldt B, Diamandis EP, Schmitt M (2006) Disease processes may be reflected by correlations among tissue kallikrein proteases bot not with proteolytic factors uPA and PAI-1 in primary ovarian carcinoma. Biol Chem 387(8):1121-8

A complete list of publications can be found here.

Grant support

  • Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)
  • Kommission für Klinische Forschungsprojekte der TUM (KKF)