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Br J Urol. 1992 Apr;69(4):392-6.

Circulating prostate specific antigen-positive cells correlate with metastatic prostate cancer.

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Department of Urology, Royal Hallamshire Hospital, Sheffield.


Analytical flow cytometry was used to study circulating prostate specific antigen (PSA)-positive cells in 40 consecutive patients with newly diagnosed, untreated prostate cancer; 25 patients (63%) had metastatic disease confirmed by a positive bone scan. Cell suspensions were prepared for each patient from both the primary tumour and peripheral blood samples. The cells were stained with a monoclonal antibody against PSA, and analysed by flow cytometry; PSA-positive cells were sorted according to their immunofluorescence and light scatter properties. The cellular deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) content of each specimen was also analysed to establish ploidy status. PSA-positive cells were detected in the peripheral blood of 33 patients (83%). The presence of these cells in the circulation showed a higher degree of sensitivity and specificity in predicting positive bone scans than did serum PSA levels. Circulating PSA-positive cells may represent either a subpopulation of tumour cells with distinct metastatic properties or, alternatively, host immunocytes which take up PSA in an active or passive manner.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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