Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Urol Oncol. 2007 May-Jun;25(3):214-20.

The detection and isolation of viable prostate-specific antigen positive epithelial cells by enrichment: a comparison to standard prostate-specific antigen reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction and its clinical relevance in prostate cancer.

Author information

Department of Urology, Medical School, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195-6510, USA.



To isolate prostate epithelial cells from the peripheral blood and bone marrow, and compare prostate-specific antigen (PSA) reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) performed on unenriched or epithelial enriched peripheral blood and bone marrow samples.


Peripheral blood samples from 371 patients with prostate cancer and 141 controls, and bone marrow samples from 292 patients with prostate cancer and 43 controls were obtained. One aliquot was assessed with PSA RT-PCR. Another was enriched for epithelial cells with paramagnetic immune microbeads and assessed for: (1) PSA immunohistochemistry, (2) PSA RT-PCR, and (3) immunofluorescent detection of epithelial cells.


In the bone marrow (P < 0.01), but not the peripheral blood (P = 0.62), we observed significantly higher detection rates of disseminated PSA expressing epithelial cells after enrichment. The presence of epithelial cells with or without evidence of PSA production was uncommon among controls both in peripheral blood (1% and 0%) and bone marrow (11% and 0%). In patients with active prostate cancer, 46% to 74% had epithelial cells in peripheral blood, and 20% to 64% had PSA expressing epithelial cells. In bone marrow, 55% to 92% had epithelial cells, and 43% to 83% had PSA expressing epithelial cells. Particularly in bone marrow, circulating cells were frequently detected in men without evidence of disease after prostatectomy. With limited follow-up, the detection of epithelial cells or PSA expressing epithelial cells in peripheral blood or bone marrow before radical prostatectomy does not define a population of patients that will have biochemical failure.


Immunomagnetic enrichment frequently detects epithelial, presumably malignant, cells in the peripheral blood and, especially, the bone marrow of patients with prostate cancer. Viable cells can be acquired for gene expression and phenotyping studies.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Support Center