publication date: Feb. 3, 2014


Prostate Cancer
Study: Gene Assay Can Provide Valid Prognostic Information

A study in aggressive prostate cancer confirmed that epigenetic profiling of selected genes can provide prognostic information corresponding to Gleason score.

“Men diagnosed with GS6 cancer may be eligible for active surveillance, however, today’s standard 12-core transrectal ultrasound-guided biopsies are susceptible to under-sampling, leaving men at risk for undetected aggressive disease,” noted E. David Crawford, professor of surgery and radiation oncology, and head of the Section of Urologic Oncology at the University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine.

The prognostic value of the epigenetic status of five genes—GSTP1, APC, RASSF1, RARB and LGALS3—in 84 prostatectomy samples with different GS’s was evaluated. The results of a hierarchical clustering analysis showed that low gene methylation levels were detected in the vast majority of patient samples with GS6 and GS7 (3+4) PCa.

In contrast, respectively 81 percent and 91 percent of the GS7 (4+3) and GS ≥ 8 samples fell into the category with intermediate to high methylation levels. These data provide evidence of the potential prognostic value of the epigenetic profile of selected genes to identify men with a low versus high risk for aggressive PCa.

The study was presented at the 2014 ASCO Genitourinary Cancers Symposium 2014 in San Francisco. The genes are part of MDxHealth SA’s ConfirmMDx for Prostate Cancer diagnostic, which detects an epigenetic field effect associated with the cancerization process at the DNA level.

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