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p185 (HER-2)


The p185 assay is a critical prognostic tool, both for diagnosis of the cancer itself and for assessment of its risk for treatment resistance and spreading. It is possible to detect increased blood levels of p185 in individuals who will subsequently develop cancer - up to 60 months before a clinical diagnosis could be rendered.

p185 is a protein involved in cell growth and development often produced in excessive levels in cancers of the breast, ovaries, lungs, gastro-intestinal system and other organs. Such over-expressed p185 on the surface of Cancer Cells is associated with a poor prognosis that includes increased tumour aggressiveness, post-treatment relapse, higher risk of spreading and a diminished response to chemotherapy.

On the other hand, p185 proteins are sometimes shed from the cell surface where they then dissolve within the blood. These soluble p185 molecules can actually counteract the cancer-promoting effects of the cell-surface p185 and so act as innate anti-tumour therapy.


This assay will provide extremely valuable and accurate information relating to all forms of cancer.


p185 protein is a transmembrane growth factor receptor, which belongs to a class of Oncogenes related to tyrosine protein kinase that possess tumorigenic or transformation activity. It is involved in all cell growth and cell transformation. p185 is a very complex transmembrane protein product of the HER-2 (c-erb, B-2, neu) gene and is closely related to the epidermal growth factor receptor. p185 protein is expressed on the epithelial cells of most organs in normal tissues. It becomes over-expressed on Cancer Cells in the breast, ovaries, lung, gastro-intestinal system, etc. Increased levels of p185 protein on the cell surface are associated with increased tumour aggressiveness, post treatment relapse and metastatic risk for different cancers. In addition the over-expression of p185 protein is associated with significantly less likelihood of a complete response to chemotherapy.

p185 protein can be shed from the cell surface and appears in the blood in soluble form. The soluble receptor is an Antagonistic for the transmembrane receptor located on the cell surface because p185 protein in the blood binds the ligand quicker than the p185 protein on the cell surface and this prevents the induction of signals by the ligand in the cells leading to tumour development. This is the natural therapeutical action of soluble p185 protein. This assay is able to provide information relating to very early oncogenic changes and is able to assist in the monitoring of tumour spread, post-operative relapse and metastatic risk. It is possible to detect increased levels of p185 in the blood of individuals who will subsequently develop cancer up to 60 months before clinical diagnosis.

High levels before an application of anti-HER-2R preparations indicate an active state of the p185/HER-2 receptors followed by increased shedding of these receptors from the cell surface. This is considered as an anti-tumour effect. However, there is a risk that an application of the preparations designed to block the HER-2 receptors on a cancerous cell surface, will block the soluble HER-2 receptors in the blood stream. This will reduce the anti-tumour effects, both the soluble HER-2 receptors and the anti-HER-2 preparations. High levels of sp185/HER-2 offer a tumour treatment indicating the effectiveness of anti-tumour therapy. Very low levels of p185/HER-2 sR are associated with a decrease in the activity of p185/HER-2 R to an extent that it cannot be considered as a contributing factor in tumour growth.
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