Epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is a heterogeneous disease with a distinctive biology and behavior. Despite improvements in the therapeutic setting, we still have to face an alarmingly high mortality rate. Markers to adequately define patients that will benefit from an individualized "tumor-tailored" treatment approach are urgently needed.
This thesis focused on the continuative evaluation of potential prognostic markers in this complex malignancy. The validation of a new subclassification approach, stratifying patients into subclasses with tremendous different prognosis was successful, additionally a significance analysis of microarrays and functional analysis of the differences between the two subclasses revealed the focal adhesion kinase (FAK) pathway as overrepresented. Therefore, the role of the FAK and the activated phosphorylated FAK - investigated as therapeutic target - was determined. Similarly, the mitochondrial pathway as well as hormone receptors are discussed as therapeutic targets but their role in EOC has not been fully elucidated yet. As little is known about the role of the mitochondrial pathway and the chaperone TRAP1 in the complex system of human EOC, the role of this mitochondrial chaperone was evaluated. Additionally, the expression and prognostic role of the estrogen receptor co-regulator PELP1 was investigated. This thesis gives an overview over a sample of interesting prognostic markers that might very well have an ambivalent role in EOC and exemplifies, that in this tumor entity a "tumor-specific-therapy" has to be tailored with caution.