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New prostate cancer test more specific, sensitive than PSA test
Date:5/16/2011

A new test for prostate cancer that measures levels of prostate specific antigen (PSA) as well as six specific antibodies found in the blood of men with the disease was more sensitive and more specific than the conventional PSA test used today, according to a study by researchers at UCLA's Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center.

The test, called the A+PSA assay, also reduced the rate of false-positives, tests that indicate the presence of cancer when no disease is actually present, said Gang Zeng, an associate professor of urology, a Jonsson Cancer Center researcher and senior author of the study.

"This is a very promising new approach," Zeng said. "Instead of using just one parameter, PSA, to test for prostate cancer, we use multiple parameters that can be measured in a single reaction."

The study appears in the May issue of the peer-reviewed Journal of Translational Medicine.

The conventional PSA test for prostate cancer has been used for nearly 30 years and is not specific enough in delineating between malignancies and non-malignant diseases of the prostate, such as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), an enlarging of the prostate common in aging men that increases PSA levels, Zeng said.

The retrospective study used blood taken before surgery from 131 patients from UCLA, Japan and France with biopsy-confirmed prostate cancers and compared results to blood taken from 121 men with either BPH or prostatitis, an infection or inflammation of the prostate that increases PSA levels. The study focused on six specific prostate-cancer associated antigens NY-ESO-1, SSX-2,4, XAGE-lb, AMACR, p90 and LEDGF - which are found predominantly in patients with prostate cancer and not in benign prostate conditions.

The A+PSA assay looked simultaneously for PSA and antibodies to the six prostate-cancer associated antigens in a single reaction test done in a laboratory, much like PSA is measured. The new test takes ab
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Contact: Kim Irwin
kirwin@mednet.ucla.edu
310-206-2805
University of California - Los Angeles Health Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

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