• Angiogenesis;
  • case–control study;
  • endometriosis;
  • inflammation;
  • serum marker

Problem:  Many soluble factors contributing to the pathophysiology of endometriosis are found at abnormal levels in patients suffering from the disease. We postulated that levels of these factors could also be altered in the serum of patients. We compared levels of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), soluble form of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) receptor-1 (sTNFR-1) and angiogenin in the serum of patients with endometriosis and controls.

Method of study:  Levels of IGF-1, sTNFR-1 and angiogenin were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay in samples from 148 patients (77 cases and 71 controls) with diagnostic confirmed by laparoscopy. Correlations with demographic data and stage of the disease were evaluated and potential confounders in the study population were controlled.

Results:  A significant increase in sTNFR-1 and angiogenin serum levels was observed in cases in comparison with controls, but only for patients in the follicular phase of the cycle. No significant difference was found in serum levels of IGF-1, sTNFR-1 and angiogenin between cases and controls in the luteal phase of the cycle. Correlations between levels of angiogenin and stage of the disease could also be observed.

Conclusion:  sTNFR-1 and angiogenin represent potential blood markers for endometriosis.