Application of DNA methylation biomarkers for endometrial cancer management

Shi Wen Jiang, Jinping Li, Karl Podratz, Sean Dowdy

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


It has become clear that aberrant gene expression, via alterations in promoter methylation or histone acetylation, is a contributing factor for carcinogenesis, perhaps as important as genetic mutation. This is particularly evident in endometrial cancer, in which multiple genes are silenced through hypermethylation. In this review, we discuss the field of epigenetics and relevant techniques to characterize methylation and acetylation alterations. The CpG island methylator phenotype, epimutations and the effects of aging on methylation are also discussed. In endometrial cancer there is evidence that hypermethylation of relevant genes can be reversed using epigenetic inhibitors, resulting in re-expression of silenced genes. Preliminary data also suggest that a panel of methylation biomarkers could be useful for diagnosis and even screening in selected populations at high risk. This disease is particularly well suited for such a strategy given that the endometrium is readily accessible for testing and endometrial cancer precursors are well defined.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)607-616
Number of pages10
JournalExpert Review of Molecular Diagnostics
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2008


  • Biomarker
  • Cancer diagnosis
  • Cancer treatment
  • DNA methylation
  • Endometrial cancer
  • Epigenetics
  • Intravaginal tampons

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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