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Infect Agent Cancer. 2009 Feb 10;4 Suppl 1:S3. doi: 10.1186/1750-9378-4-S1-S3.

Microarray comparison of prostate tumor gene expression in African-American and Caucasian American males: a pilot project study.

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College of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences Florida A&M University, Tallahassee, Florida, USA.
H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center Tampa, Florida, USA.
Institute of Genomics and Systems Biology, The University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA.
Department of Pathology, Federal Medical Center (FMC), Abeokuta, Nigeria.
Institute of Public Health, Florida A&M University, Tallahassee, Florida, USA.
Contributed equally


African American Men are 65% more likely to develop prostate cancer and are twice as likely to die of prostate cancer, than are Caucasian American Males. The explanation for this glaring health disparity is still unknown; although a number of different plausible factors have been offered including genetic susceptibility and gene-environment interactions. We favor the hypothesis that altered gene expression plays a major role in the disparity observed in prostate cancer incidence and mortality between African American and Caucasian American Males. To discover genes or gene expression pattern(s) unique to African American or to Caucasian American Males that explain the observed prostate cancer health disparity in African American males, we conducted a micro array pilot project study that used prostate tumors with a Gleason score of 6. We compared gene expression profiling in tumors from African-American Males to prostate tumors in Caucasian American Males. A comparison of case-matched ratios revealed at least 67 statistically significant genes that met filtering criteria of at least +/- 4.0 fold change and p < 0.0001. Gene ontology terms prevalent in African American prostate tumor/normal ratios relative to Caucasian American prostate tumor/normal ratios included interleukins, progesterone signaling, Chromatin-mediated maintenance and myeloid dendritic cell proliferation. Functional in vitro assays are underway to determine roles that selected genes in these onotologies play in contributing to prostate cancer development and health disparity.

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