Ovarian cancer is the second most common gynecologic malignancy, accounting for approximately 220,000 deaths annually worldwide. Despite radical surgery and initial high response rates to platinum- and taxane-based chemotherapy, most patients experience a relapse, with a median progression-free survival of only 18 months. Overall survival is approximately 30% at 5 years from the diagnosis. In comparison, patients out from breast cancer are more than 80 % after ten years from the disease discovery. In spite of a large number of published fundamental and applied research, and clinical trials, novel therapies are urgently needed to improve outcomes of the ovarian cancer. The success of new drugs development in ovarian cancer will strongly depend on both fully genomic disease characterization and, then, availability of biomarkers able to identify women likely to benefit from a given new therapy. <p></p> Methods: In this review, the focus is given to describe how complex is the diseases under the simple name of ovarian cancer, in terms of cell tumor types, histotypes, subtypes, and specific gene muta-tion or differently expressed in the tumor with respect the healthy ovary. The first- and second-line pharmacological treatment clinically used over the last fifty years are also described. Noteworthy achievements in vitro and in vivo tested new drugs are also summarized. Recent literature related to up to date ovarian cancer knowledge, its detection by biomarkers and chemotherapy was searched from several articles on Pubmed, Google Scholar, MEDLINE and various Governmental Agencies till April 2019. <p></p> Results: The papers referenced by this review allow a deep analysis of status of the art in the classi-fication of the several types of ovarian cancer, the present knowledge of diagnosis based on bi-omarkers and imaging techniques, and the therapies developed over the past five decades. <p></p> Conclusion: This review aims at stimulating more multi-disciplinary efforts to identify a panel of novel and more specific biomarkers to be used to screen patients for a very early diagnosis, to have prognosis and therapy efficacy indications. The desired final goal would be to have available tools allowing to reduce the recurrence rate, increase both the disease progression free interval and of course the overall survival at five years from the diagnosis that today is still very low. <p></p>.
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