Researchers Working on Non-Invasive Prostate Cancer Diagnosis Using Urine Sample

Researchers Working on Non-Invasive Prostate Cancer Diagnosis Using Urine Sample
Screening hundreds of proteins in prostatic secretions from prostate cancer patients allowed researchers to identify protein signatures capable of detecting prostate cancer and distinguish aggressive from benign forms, paving the wave for a urine sample test to diagnose the disease. The study, "Targeted proteomics identifies liquid-biopsy signatures for extracapsular prostate cancer," published in the journal Nature Communications, is a significant step toward a future where prostate cancer can be diagnosed without the need for invasive biopsies — a necessary evil of today’s diagnostic processes. In an earlier study comparing two different prostate cancer groups, the research team had identified no fewer than 624 proteins in prostatic secretions. Such secretions can be obtained through a urine sample collected after a digital rectal examination. Building on this work, a new joint effort between researchers from the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR) and University Health Network (UHN) in Toronto, Canada, and Eastern Virginia Medical School allowed the team to narrow down the large number of proteins to 133. Testing the validity of the proteins in a group of 74 individuals, divided into two types of prostate cancer patients, healthy controls, and men with prostate enlargement enabled further selection. The research team then tested a group of 34 proteins in a new group of patients and controls, for a total of 207 individuals. Thorough tests and
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Magdalena holds an MSc in Pharmaceutical Bioscience and an interdisciplinary PhD merging the fields of psychiatry, immunology and neuropharmacology. Her previous research focused on metabolic and immunologic changes in psychotic disorders. She is now focusing on science writing, allowing her to culture her passion for medical science and human health.

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