Background: CA 19-9 is one of the most frequently used biomarkers for tumors.
Methods: We analyzed the influential factors of the Carbohydrate Antigen 19-9 (CA 19-9) levels in Chinese general population to better interpret the results of the CA 19-9 screening tests. 36,924 apparently healthy individuals and 1,335 patients with gastrointestinal (GI) tumors were involved in this study. Serum CA 19-9 levels were measured
using a Roche Cobas E601.
Results: The serum CA 19-9 levels in apparently healthy individuals were correlated with age and gender. Its level was positively correlated with the age of males, while it showed a V-shape curve in female populations. This effect could be due to sex hormones, such as prolactin, which were found to have a negative effect on the level of CA 19-
9 in the present study.
Conclusions: Our data indicates that gender and age could affect the CA19-9 serum level. We can set up different cut-off values according to the patient’s gender and age, which can help us to get a more individualized representation in different populations.