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Neoplasma. 2005;52(3):248-54.

Blood and tissue selenium concentrations and glutathione peroxidase activities in patients with prostate cancer and benign prostate hyperplasia.

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  • 1Department of Toxicology and Carcinogenesis, Nofer Institute of Occupational Medicine, Lodz, Poland.


Prostate cancer (PC) is the most common cancer in men and a leading cause of cancer death. Prostatic gland accumulates reasonably high amount of selenium (Se), the element that prevents the development of PC. It is hypothesized that some selenoproteins inhibit the transformation of normal prostate epithelium into neoplasm. We studied Se levels in whole blood, plasma and prostate of 32 PC and 40 benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH) patients and in the control group composed of 39 healthy subjects. The selenoenzyme glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px) was also measured in the patients' red cells, plasma and prostate tissue. Se concentration in whole blood and plasma in both groups of patients was lower as compared with controls, while in prostate gland it was significantly higher in PC than in BPH patients and controls. Red cell GSH-Px activity was the same in PC patients and controls but significantly lower in BPH patients. Plasma GSH-Px activity was significantly lower in PC patients than in the control group, and prostate GSH-Px activity was significantly lower in PC patients as compared with BPH patients. Since Se has anticancer properties, it is very likely that its low level in blood may facilitate the development of cancer. A higher level of Se in prostate of PC patients has no influence on GSH-Px activity in the gland.

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