Salivary melatonin and squamous cell carcinoma antigen 1 levels in patients with oral squamous cell carcinoma


Session type:


Ivan Salarić1,Ivana Karmelić2,Jasna Lovrić2,Marko Rožman3,Davor Brajdić1,Ivan Zajc1,Igor Čvrljević4,Ksenija Baždarić5,Darko Macan1
1Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, University of Zagreb School of Dental Medicine, University Hospital Dubrava, Zagreb, Croatia,2Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Zagreb School of Medicine, Zagreb, Croatia,3Division of Physical Chemistry, Ruđer Bošković Institute, Zagreb, Croatia,4Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, University Hospital Dubrava, Zagreb, Croatia,5Department of Medical Informatics, Rijeka University School of Medicine, Zagreb, Croatia



Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OC) is one of the ten most frequent cancers in the world, with a 5-year survival rate between 30-60%. Melatonin (MLT) has anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and immunomodulating properties and is considered to contribute in protecting the oral cavity from tissue damage caused by endogenic and exogenic factors. Squamous cell carcinoma antigen (SCCA) has been recognized as a potential serum marker for various squamous cell carcinomas and other diseases. However, most of the studies on serum SCCA and OC have not distinguished SCCA1 and SCCA2, due to their similar chemical structure. It is important to mention that the two molecules play different roles in the organism. Aim of the proposed study is to determine salivary MLT and SCCA1 concentrations in patients with OC.


Unstimulated whole saliva (UWS) and stimulated whole saliva (SWS) was sampled from 29 patients with OC (21 male, 8 female) and 29 age and sex matched healthy subjects (22 male, 7 female). Only patients with histologically diagnosed oral squamous cell carcinoma were included in the study. Sandwich human SCCA1 ELISA kits (My BioSource, San Diego, USA) and Melatonin direct saliva ELISA kits (IBL International GmbH, Hamburg, Germany) were used. This research has been funded by the Croatian Science Foundation (IP-09-2014-9376).


Melatonin UWS levels were higher in the OC than in the control group (p=0.045; median OC: 2.18 pg/mL(95% CI:1.37-2.88), median control group: 0.84 pg/mL(95% CI: 0.50-1.71)). SCCA1 levels were higher in the OC group both in WUS (p=0.030; median OC: 244,26 pg/mL(95% CI:133,00 to 513,27), median control group: 2pg/mL(95% CI: 2,00-321,47)) and WSS (p=0.014; median OC: 478,03 pg/mL(95% CI:125,16-618,74), median control group: 2,00(95% CI:2,00-207,46)). 


Salivary MLT and SCCA1 could serve as satisfactory biomarkers for OC. To our knowledge, MLT and SCCA1 have not yet been measured in the saliva of OC patients.