Cancer antigen 50 (CA50) is a glycolipid that is similar to the tumor marker CA19-9; however, CA50 antibodies recognize both the fucosyl form of sialylated Lewis(a) carbohydrate moiety and sialylated Lewis(a) moiety. CA50 is not organ-specific and elevated levels are seen in various conditions such as colitis, pancreatitis, pneumonia, and cancers, especially gastrointestinal cancers (e.g., pancreatic, stomach, hepatic, and colorectal cancers). It can be used as a marker for detecting gastrointestinal cancers, specifically pancreatic and colon cancer. Diagnostic assays for CA50 are based on the antibody sandwich principle using ELISA or CLIA.
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