Fifty-four early stage gastric cancer patients were investigated for the presence of AFP and CEA. In their tumor specimens 9 patients showed AFP, 14 patients showed CEA and 9 patients showed AFP and CEA positivity by immunoperoxidase staining. Mean age was younger in AFP (+) patients (44.35 +/- 8.4) than others (53.5 +/- 8.0, p=0.0006). There was a significant correlation between the AFP and CEA positivity and stage of the disease (p=0.001, p=0.001). Lymphatic and/or venous invasion were more prominent in tumors with positive AFP staining (p=0.04) but serosal invasion was more frequent in CEA (+) tumors (p=0.05). THe incidence of poorly diferentiated tumors was high in AFP (+) tumors (p=0.034). Disease free survival (DFS) and overall survival (OS) were significantly shorter in patients with high serum AFP and CEA levels (p=0.0001). As conclusion AFP and CEA content of the tumor is a very important parameter in the management and prognosis of gastric cancer patients.