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BJU Int. 2011 Jul;108(2):248-51. doi: 10.1111/j.1464-410X.2010.09716.x. Epub 2010 Sep 30.

Nerve growth factor level in the prostatic fluid of patients with chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome is correlated with symptom severity and response to treatment.

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Department of Urology, Okayama University Graduate School of Medicine, Dentistry, and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Okayama, Japan.



• To explore whether levels of nerve growth factor (NGF) in expressed prostatic secretions (EPS) are correlated with symptom severity in chronic prostatitis (CP) and chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS).


• All patients with CP/CPPS underwent a complete history and physical examination, and were scored according to the National Institutes of Health Chronic Prostatitis Symptom Index (NIH-CPSI). • Expressed prostatic secretion samples from 20 patients with CP/CPPS and from four asymptomatic control patients were collected and frozen, and NGF levels in EPS were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. • Patients were asked to complete NIH-CPSI questionnaires at baseline and 8 weeks after treatment and patients with at least a 25% decrease in total NIH-CPSI score from the baseline values were classified as responders to treatment.


• The mean (± sd) NGF levels in EPS of patients with CP/CPPS and asymptomatic control patients were 7409 (± 3788) pg/mL and 4174 (± 1349) pg/mL, respectively. The NGF level in patients with CP/CPPS correlated directly with pain severity (P= 0.014, r= 0.541). • There were no significant differences between NGF levels in EPS before and after treatment. However, successful treatment significantly decreased NGF levels in responders (P= 0.001).


• Nerve growth factor might contribute to the pathophysiology of CP/CPPS as changes in NGF level in EPS occurred in proportion to pain severity. Therefore, these results suggest that NGF could be used as a new biomarker to evaluate the symptoms of CP/CPPS and the effects of treatment.

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