Combining results from two urinary tests could help identify patients with aggressive prostate cancer earlier and reduce unnecessary biopsies.
The two urinary tests included in the study were the PCA3 and TMPRSS2:ERG (T2:ERG). PCA3 and T2:ERG are both biomarkers for prostate cancer. The PCA3 gene is highly expressed by prostate tumors. T2:ERG tests for a gene fusion produced by approximately half of prostate cancers.
The authors created a mathematical algorithm combining the urinary test scores that they say increased specificity for aggressive prostate cancer (Gleason score 7 or higher) from 17% to 33% when compared to PSA alone. For the 561 men in the study's validation cohort, combining the urinary test scores avoided 42% of unnecessary biopsies and missed 7% of high-grade cancers.
JAMA Oncol. 2017 Aug 1;3(8):1085-1093. doi: 10.1001/jamaoncol.2017.0177.