EPCA-2 maintains diagnostic promise in further studies

May 22, 2007

In expanded studies, Early Prostate Cancer Antigen-2 (EPCA-2) continues to demonstrate high specificity and sensitivity as a serum biomarker for prostate cancer, reported the researchers from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, who developed this diagnostic tool.

In expanded studies, Early Prostate Cancer Antigen-2 (EPCA-2) continues to demonstrate high specificity and sensitivity as a serum biomarker for prostate cancer, reported the researchers from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, who developed this diagnostic tool.

EPCA-2 is a nuclear matrix protein that the researchers previously identified as being expressed selectively in prostate cancer using a proteomic approach. Initial testing of a serum bioassay for EPCA-2 in men with prostate cancer, BPH, or an elevated PSA with a repeat negative biopsy showed it had high sensitivity and specificity for discriminating men with prostate cancer. That research also showed EPCA-2 was very accurate in differentiating men with organ-confined disease at surgery from those with extracapsular prostate cancer.

At the AUA annual meeting here, results were presented from testing performed in groups of men with BPH, chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome, prostate cancer and a PSA

"This research suggests EPCA-2 may be the holy grail of prostate cancer markers," said senior author Robert H. Getzenberg, PhD. "Further validation studies are ongoing, but we are excited about its potential to limit prostate biopsies to men who really need them, and we're hoping it can be used to differentiate aggressive and non-aggressive tumors and provide guidance for the more than 25 million men who have elevated PSA levels and at least one negative biopsy as well."

For an interview with Dr. Getzenberg, please tune into www.urologytimes.com/radio_AUA2007.