The latest medical research on Prostate Cancer

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Overview of seminal fluid biomarkers for the evaluation of chronic prostatitis: a scoping review.

Prostate Cancer

Chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CP/CPPS) is a very common and difficult condition to evaluate, as it is a clinical diagnosis, without a measurable diagnostic "gold standard". The aim of this scoping review is to synthesize all the available data for seminal fluid biomarkers used to assess patients with CP/CPPS.

A systematic search to identify all relevant publications was conducted on October 22, 2020 across five databases: Ovid Medline, Ovid EMBASE, PubMed, CCRT, and the CINAHL. Two independent authors screened all articles and extracted relevant data.

A total of 27 articles met the eligibility criteria. A majority of studies were case-control (15), with 6 observational cohorts and 6 comparative interventional studies. The total number of pooled patients included 585 patients with CP/CPPS (unspecified subtype), 371 patients with inflammatory CP/CPPS, 387 patients with non-inflammatory CP/CPPS, 354 patients with chronic bacterial prostatitis, and 432 healthy controls. Inflammatory seminal biomarkers were the most frequently studied, with IL6, IL8, TNFα and IL1β being the most promising candidates.

There are a number of very promising seminal biomarkers to help categorize and monitor therapies in CP/CPPS. Large multicentre studies using a shared protocol for measuring seminal biomarkers with the primary intention of biomarker validation are needed prior to clinical implementation. Identification of biomarker(s) will facilitate the etiological categorization of patients with chronic prostatitis and provide an objective framework to tailor specific therapies according to the biomarker family.

Is tumour volume an independent predictor of outcome after radical prostatectomy for high-risk prostate cancer?

Prostate Cancer

Preoperative PSA, ISUP grade group (GG), prostate examination and multiparametric MRI (mpMRI) form the basis of prostate cancer staging. Unlike other solid organ tumours, tumour volume (TV) is not routinely used aside from crude estimates such as maximum cancer core length. The aim of this study is to assess the role of TV as a marker for oncological outcomes in high-risk non-metastatic prostate cancer.

A prospectively maintained database of patients undergoing minimally invasive (laparoscopic or robot-assisted laparoscopic) radical prostatectomy at a UK centre between 2007 and 2019 were analysed. A total of 251 patients with NCCN high or very high-risk prostate cancer were identified. Primary outcome measure was time to biochemical recurrence (BCR) and the secondary outcome was time to treatment failure (TTF). TV was measured on the pathological specimen using the stacking method. Multivariable cox regression analysis was used to identify factors predicting BCR and TFF. TV as a predictor of BCR and TFF was further analysed through time-dependent receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves. Kaplan-Meier survival estimates were used to evaluate TV cut-off scores.

Median follow up was 4.50 years. Four factors were associated with BCR and TFF on multivariable analysis (TV, pathological GG, pathological T stage, positive margin >3 mm). Area under the Curve (AUC) for TV as a predictor of BCR and TTF at 5 years was 0.71 and 0.75, respectively. Including all 4 variables in the model increased AUC to 0.84 and 0.85 for BCR and TFF. A 2.50 cm TV cut off demonstrated a significance difference in time to BCR, p < 0.001.

Pathological tumour volume is an independent predictor of oncological outcomes in high risk prostate cancer but does not add significant prognostic value when combined with established variables. However, the option of accurate TV measurement on mpMRI raises the possibility of using TV as useful marker for preoperative risk stratification.

Combination therapy with novel androgen receptor antagonists and statin for castration-resistant prostate cancer.


One of the growth mechanisms of castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) is de novo androgen synthesis from intracellular cholesterol, and statins may be able to inhibit this mechanism. In addition, statins have been reported to suppress the expression of androgen receptors (ARs) in prostate cancer cell lines. In this study, we investigated a combination therapy of novel AR antagonists and statin, simvastatin, for CRPC.

LNCaP, 22Rv1, and PC-3 human prostate cancer cell lines were used. We developed androgen-independent LNCaP cells (LNCaP-LA). Microarray analysis was performed, followed by pathway analysis, and mRNA and protein expression was evaluated by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction and Western blot analysis, respectively. Cell viability was determined by MTS assay and cell counts. All evaluations were performed on cells treated with simvastatin and with or without AR antagonists (enzalutamide, apalutamide, and darolutamide).

The combination of darolutamide and simvastatin most significantly suppressed proliferation in LNCaP-LA and 22Rv1 cells. In a 22Rv1-derived mouse xenograft model, the combination of darolutamide and simvastatin enhanced the inhibition of cell proliferation. In LNCaP-LA cells, the combination of darolutamide and simvastatin led to reduction in the mRNA expression of the androgen-stimulated genes, KLK2 and PSA; however, this reduction in expression did not occur in 22Rv1 cells. The microarray data and pathway analyses showed that the number of differentially expressed genes in the darolutamide and simvastatin-treated 22Rv1 cells was the highest in the pathway termed "role of cell cycle." Consequently, we focused our efforts on the cell cycle regulator polo-like kinase 1 (PLK1), cyclin-dependent kinase 2 (CDK2), and cell cycle division 25C (CDC25C). In 22Rv1 cells, the combination of darolutamide and simvastatin suppressed the mRNA and protein expression of these three genes. In addition, in PC-3 cells (which lack AR expression), the combination of simvastatin and darolutamide enhanced the suppression of cell proliferation and expression of these genes.

Simvastatin alters the expression of many genes involved in the cell cycle in CRPC cells. Thus, the combination of novel AR antagonists (darolutamide) and simvastatin can potentially affect CRPC growth through both androgen-dependent and androgen-independent mechanisms.

Overall and progression-free survival of Afro-Caribbean men with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC).


Several studies in the Caucasian population have shown the benefit of using docetaxel, abiraterone, or enzalutamide for patients with metastatic prostate cancer at the castration-resistant stage (mCRPC). However, there are no strong data for men of African ancestry. The objective of this study was to estimate the overall and progression-free survival of patients according to these treatments at the mCRPC stage.

This was a monocentric retrospective study that consecutively included 211 men with mCRPC between June 1, 2009 and August 31, 2020. The primary end point was overall survival (OS). The secondary end point was progression-free survival. Kaplan-Meier survival and Cox proportional hazard analyses were performed.

The present study included 180 patients for analyses. There was no difference in OS (log-rank test = 0.73), with a median follow-up of 20.7 months, regardless of the treatment administered in the first line. Men with mCRPC who received hormonotherapy (abiraterone or enzalutamide) showed better progression-free survival than those who received docetaxel (log-rank test = 0.004), with a particular interest for abiraterone hazard ratio (HR) = 0.51 (95% confidence interval: 0.39-0.67). The patient characteristics were similar, except for bone lesions, irrespective of the treatment administered in the first line. After univariate then multivariate analysis, only World Health Organization status and metastases at diagnosis were significantly associated with progression.

Our results suggest the use of hormonotherapy (abiraterone or enzalutamide) with a tendency for abiraterone in first line for men with African ancestry at the mCRPC stage.

Effects of yoga in men with prostate cancer on quality of life and immune response: a pilot randomized controlled trial.

Prostate Cancer (NCT02620033).

In this randomized controlled study, 29 men newly diagnosed with localized prostate cancer were randomized to yoga for 6 weeks (n = 14) or standard-of-care (n = 15) before radical prostatectomy. The primary outcome was self-reported QoL, assessed by the Expanded Prostate Index Composite (EPIC), Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Prostate (FACT-P), Functional Assessment of Chronic Illness Therapy-Fatigue (FACIT-F), Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-General (FACT-G) at baseline, preoperatively, and 6 weeks postoperatively. Secondary outcomes were changes in immune cell status and cytokine levels with yoga.

The greatest benefit of yoga on QoL was seen in EPIC-sexual (mean difference, 8.5 points), FACIT-F (6.3 points), FACT-Functional wellbeing (8.6 points), FACT-physical wellbeing (5.5 points), and FACT-Social wellbeing (14.6 points). The yoga group showed increased numbers of circulating CD4+ and CD8+ T-cells, more production of interferon-gamma by natural killer cells, and increased Fc receptor III expression in natural killer cells. The yoga group also showed decreased numbers of regulatory T-cells, myeloid-derived suppressor cells, indicating antitumor activity, and reduction in inflammatory cytokine levels (granulocyte colony-stimulating factor [0.55 (0.05-1.05), p = 0.03], monocyte chemoattractant protein [0.22 (0.01-0.43), p = 0.04], and FMS-like tyrosine kinase-3 ligand [0.91 (-0.01, 1.82), p = 0.053].

Perioperative yoga exercise improved QoL, promoted an immune response, and attenuated inflammation in men with prostate cancer. Yoga is feasible in this setting and has benefits that require further investigation.

Improved survival with post-diagnostic metformin and statin use in a racially diverse cohort of US Veterans with advanced prostate cancer.

Prostate Cancer

To examine the association between post-diagnostic metformin or statin use with all-cause and prostate cancer (PCa)-specific mortality in men with advanced prostate cancer.

Our study consisted of 4572 men (Black = 1352, White = 3192, Other Race = 28) diagnosed with advanced cancer (T4/M1/N1) between 1999 and 2013 in the Veteran Health Administration. The association between post-diagnostic (1) metformin and (2) statin use with all-cause and PCa-specific mortality was examined using multivariable, time-varying Cox Proportional Hazard Models. In a secondary analysis, models were stratified by race.

Post-diagnostic metformin use was associated with a reduced risk of all-cause (Hazard Ratio (HR) 0.84, 95% Confidence Interval (CI): 0.73, 0.96) and PCa-specific death (HR: 0.76, 95% CI: 0.63, 0.91). In stratified analyses, the inverse association between post-diagnostic metformin use and both all-cause PCa-specific mortality was limited to White men. Post-diagnostic statin use was associated with a reduced risk of all-cause (HR: 0.75, 95% CI: 0.68, 0.83) and PCa-specific mortality (HR: 0.72; 95% CI: 0.64, 0.81). In stratified analyses, similar inverse associations were observed for post-diagnostic statin use and all-cause and PCa-specific mortality in both Black and White men.

Post diagnostic metformin and statin use may prevent progression to lethal prostate cancer in men with advanced prostate cancer.

Androgen deprivation therapy and acute kidney injury in patients with prostate cancer undergoing definitive radiotherapy.

Prostate Cancer

Androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) is frequently utilized in conjunction with radiotherapy (RT) in the definitive management of prostate cancer. Prior studies have suggested an association between ADT use and acute kidney injury (AKI), however, these included heterogeneous populations undergoing a variety of treatments and relied on billing codes to ascertain the incidence of AKI.

We analyzed a cohort of 27,868 veterans undergoing definitive RT + /- ADT for prostate cancer between 2001 and 2015 using the Veterans Affairs Informatics and Computing Infrastructure (VINCI). Exposure was defined as use of ADT within one year of diagnosis. The primary outcome was AKI, defined by an increase in serum creatinine to at least 1.5 times the baseline value. AKIs were classified as mild, moderate, or severe in accordance with international guidelines. A multivariate competing risks model was used to account for demographic and oncologic factors as well as medications and procedures known to influence the risk of AKI.

Most (n = 18,754) men received RT alone; 9,114 men received RT + ADT. The incidence of AKI at two years after diagnosis was 10.5% in the RT + ADT group and 7.9% in the RT group (Gray's test p < 0.01). Multivariate analysis confirmed ADT usage was associated with an increased risk for any AKI (SHR = 1.24, 95% CI = 1.14-1.36, p < 0.01). ADT was also associated with an increased risk of mild AKI (SHR = 1.13, 95% CI = 1.01-1.27, p = 0.04) and moderate AKI (SHR = 1.45, 95% CI = 1.20-1.76, p < 0.01), though not severe AKI (SHR = 1.33, 95% CI = 0.93-1.91, p = 0.11).

Our findings confirm that use of ADT is associated with an increased risk of AKI in patients undergoing definitive RT for prostate cancer. Clinicians should be alert to the potential for renal dysfunction in this population.

Phase I clinical trial of HC-1119 soft capsule in Chinese healthy adult male subjects: Pharmacokinetics and safety of single-dose proportionality and effects of food.


Preclinical studies showed that HC-1119, a deuterated version of enzalutamide, could competitively inhibit androgen binding to androgen receptor by blocking the transmission of androgen receptor signaling pathway as enzalutamide, inducing apoptosis of prostate cancer cells and reducing the proliferation of prostate cancer cells. Animal pharmacokinetic studies also show that deuterization of enzalutamide as HC-1119 could retain the basic properties of mother drug, increases the stability of compounds to metabolic enzymes and the drug exposure in vivo, prolong the half-life and reduce the production of metabolites, which may lead to a better efficacy and safety of HC-1119 compared with enzalutamide.

To evaluate the pharmacokinetics and safety of HC-1119 and the effects of food on pharmacokinetics in healthy adult Chinese men after single-dose administration of HC-1119. A total of 47 Chinese healthy adult male subjects received HC-1119 soft capsule at a single oral dose of 40, 80, or 160 mg followed on fasting or 160 mg after high-fat meal respectively. HC-1119 prototype and its metabolites M1 and M2 in plasma were collected individually in a total 23 time points. Pharmacokinetics were determined by sensitive LC/MS/MS for dose-proportionality study.

In subjects taking HC-1119 soft capsules on fasting, Cmax of HC-1119 prototype increased dose-dependently. Either Cmax and AUC0-∞ of M1 or Cmax of M2 showed statistically significant difference. Dose-proportionality evaluation showed linear pharmacokinetic characteristics in Cmax of HC-1119 prototype, Cmax and AUC0-∞ of M2 in dose range of 40-160 mg. Cmax of HC-1119 was significantly different between the two groups as 160 mg HC-1119 on fasting or after a high-fat diet respectively, while the other parameter were not. HC-1119 and its metabolites M1 and M2 showed a linear dynamic trend.

HC-1119 is expected to have lower clinical dose than the similar drug enzalutamide. The absorption of HC-1119 and the main pharmacokinetic parameters of HC-1119 and its metabolites M1 and M2 were not affected by high-fat diet. The clinical application of HC-1119 soft capsule in the later stage can be recommended for both fasting and postprandial. The safety and tolerance were good in this population.

Concordance of biopsy and pathologic ISUP grading in salvage radical prostatectomy patients for recurrent prostate cancer.


To investigate the concordance of biopsy and pathologic International Society of Urological Pathology (ISUP) grading in salvage radical prostatectomy (SRP) patients for recurrent prostate cancer.

Within a high-volume center database, we identified patients who underwent SRP for recurrent prostate cancer (PCa) between 2004 and 2020. Upgrading, downgrading, concordance, and any discordance between posttreatment biopsy ISUP and ISUP at SRP were tested. Logistic regression models were used to predict ISUP upgrading and ISUP discordance. Models were adjusted for prostatic specific antigen before SRP, age at surgery, initial prostatic specific antigen (PSA), type of primary treatment, time from primary PCa diagnosis to SRP, number of positive cores at biopsy, and original Gleason score.

Overall, 184 patients with available biopsy and pathologic ISUP grading were identified. Of those, 17.4% (n = 32), 40.8% (n = 75), 19.6% (n = 36), and 22.2% (n = 41) harbored biopsy ISUP 1, ISUP 2, ISUP 3, and ISUP 4-5 grading, respectively. Pathologic ISUP 1, ISUP 2, ISUP 3, and ISUP 4-5 grading was recorded in 6.0% (n = 11), 40.8% (n = 75), 32.1% (n = 59), and 21.2% (n = 39), respectively. Median PSA before SRP was 5.5 ng/ml (interquartile range [IQR]: 3.1-8.1 ng/ml), median age at SRP was 65.1 years (IQR:60.7-69.4 years) and median time from original PCa diagnosis to SRP was 47 months (IQR: 27.3-85.2 months). Concordance of biopsy and pathologic ISUP was identified in 45.1% (n = 83). Conversely, any ISUP discordance, upgrading and downgrading of at least one ISUP group was identified in 54.9% (n = 101), 35.3% (n = 65), and 19.6% (n = 36). In logistic models, none of the preoperative characteristics was associated with upgrading or ISUP discordance (all p > 0.1).

Discordance between biopsy and pathologic ISUP grading is common at SRP. However, in 45% of SRP cases biopsy ISUP is capable to predict pathologic ISUP. Further studies are necessary to identify characteristics for ISUP upgrading at SRP.

Effects of the 2012 and 2018 US preventive services task force prostate cancer screening guidelines on pathologic outcomes after prostatectomy.


In May 2018, the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommended prostate cancer (PCa) screening for ages 55-69 be an individual decision. This changed from the USPSTF's May 2012 recommendation against screening for all ages. The effects of the 2012 and 2018 updates on pathologic outcomes after prostatectomy are unclear.

This study included 647 patients with PCa who underwent prostatectomy at our institution from 2005 to 2018. Patient groups were those diagnosed before the 2012 update (n = 179), between 2012 and 2018 updates (n = 417), and after the 2018 update (n = 51). We analyzed changes in the age of diagnosis, pathologic Gleason grade group (pGS), pathologic stage, lymphovascular invasion (LVI), and favorable/unfavorable pathology. Multivariable logistic regression adjusting for pre-biopsy covariables (age, prostate-specific antigen [PSA], African American race, family history) assessed impacts of 2012 and 2018 updates on pGS and pathologic stage. A p  < 0.05 was statistically significant.

Median age increased from 60 to 63 (p = 0.001) between 2012 and 2018 updates and to 64 after the 2018 update. A significant decrease in pGS1, pGS2, pT2, and favorable pathology (p < 0.001), and a significant increase in pGS3, pGS4, pGS5, pT3a, and unfavorable pathology (p < 0.001) was detected between 2012 and 2018 updates. There was no significant change in pT3b or LVI between 2012 and 2018 updates. On multivariable regression, diagnosis between 2012 and 2018 updates was significantly associated with pGS4 or pGS5 and pT3a (p < 0.001). Diagnosis after the 2018 update was significantly associated with pT3a (p = 0.005). Odds of pGS4 or pGS5 were 3.2× higher (p < 0.001) if diagnosed between 2012 and 2018 updates, and 2.3× higher (p = 0.051) if after the 2018 update. Odds of pT3a were 2.4× higher (p < 0.001) if diagnosed between 2012 and 2018 updates and 2.9× higher (p = 0.005) if after the 2018 update.

The 2012 USPSTF guidelines negatively impacted pathologic outcomes after prostatectomy. Patients diagnosed between 2012 and 2018 updates had increased frequency of higher-risk PCa and lower frequency of favorable disease. In addition, data after the 2018 update demonstrate a continued negative impact on postprostatectomy pathology. Thus, further investigation of the long-term effects of the 2018 USPSTF update is warranted.

Optimization of clinical risk-factor interpretation and radiological findings with machine learning for PIRADS category 3 patients.


Due to the low cancer-detection rate in patients with PIRADS category 3 lesions, we created machine learning (ML) models to facilitate decision-making about whether to perform prostate biopsies or monitor clinical information without biopsy results.

In our retrospective, single-center study, 101 eligible patients with at least one PIRADS category 3 lesion but no higher PIRADS lesions underwent MRI/US fusion biopsies between September 2017 and June 2020. Thirty additional patients were included as the validation cohort from the next chronological period from June 2020 to October 2020. Our ML research was a supervised classification problem, with a binary output based on pathological reports of cancerous or benign tissue. The clinical inputs were age, prostate-specific antigen (PSA), prostate volume, prostate-specific antigen density (PSAD), and the number of previous biopsies. The radiology-report inputs were the number of lesions, maximum lesion diameter, lesion location, and lesion zone. We subsequently removed the inputs with low importance. Logistic Regression, Support Vector Machine, Naive Bayes, Decision Tree, Random Forest, and eXtreme Gradient Boosting Tree (XGBoost) were employed. From receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves, we determined Area Under the ROC Curve (AUC), the cut-off point, and sensitivity score (recall score) to evaluate the ML-model performance.

Twenty-four adenocarcinoma patients had a mean age of 70 ± 5.79 years, a mean PSA of 12.42 ± 6.67 ng/ml, a mean prostate volume of 46.49 ± 23.13 ml, and a mean PSAD of 0.31 ± 0.22 ng/ml2 . Seventy-seven patients with benign tissue reports had a mean age of 66.39 ± 6.66 years, a mean PSA of 11.31 ± 7.50 ng/ml, a mean prostate volume of 65.25 ± 35.88 ml, and a mean PSAD of 0.19 ± 0.13 ng/ml2 . On the validation cohort, XGBoost had the best AUC of 0.76, which considered 80% sensitivity and 72% specificity at a probability cutoff of 57%. The remaining possible ML models performed worse with lesser AUC. The worst was Naïve Bayes, with AUC of 0.50.

ML models facilitate PIRADS 3 patient selection for MRI/US fusion biopsies. ML could optimize how we use previously known clinical risk factors to their full potential.

Clinical and genomic features of SPOP-mutant prostate cancer.


Inactivating missense mutations in the SPOP gene, encoding speckle-type poxvirus and zinc-finger protein, are one of the most common genetic alterations in prostate cancer.

We retrospectively identified 72 consecutive prostate cancer patients with somatic SPOP mutations, through next-generation sequencing analysis, who were treated at the Johns Hopkins Hospital. We evaluated clinical and genomic characteristics of this SPOP-mutant subset.

SPOP alterations were clustered in the MATH domain, with hotspot mutations involving the F133 and F102 residues. The most frequent concurrent genetic alterations were in APC (16/72 [22%]), PTEN (13/72 [18%]), and TP53 (11/72 [15%]). SPOP-mutant cancers appeared to be mutually exclusive with tumors harboring the TMPRSS2-ERG fusion, and were significantly enriched for Wnt pathway (APC, CTNNB1) mutations and de-enriched for TP53/PTEN/RB1 alterations. Patients with mtSPOP had durable responses to androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) with a median time-to-castration-resistance of 42.0 (95% confidence interval [CI], 25.7-60.8) months. However, time-to-castration-resistance was significantly shorter in SPOP-mutant patients with concurrent TP53 mutations (hazard ratio [HR] 4.53; p = 0.002), HRD pathway (ATM, BRCA1/2, and CHEK2) mutations (HR 3.19; p = 0.003), and PI3K pathway (PTEN, PIK3CA, and AKT1) alterations (HR 2.69; p = 0.004). In the castration-resistant prostate cancer setting, median progression-free survival was 8.9 (95% CI, 6.7-NR) months on abiraterone and 7.3 (95% CI, 3.2-NR) months on enzalutamide. There were no responses to PARP inhibitor treatment.

SPOP-mutant prostate cancers represent a unique subset with absent ERG fusions and frequent Wnt pathway alterations, with potentially greater dependency on androgen signaling and enhanced responsiveness to ADT. Outcomes are best for SPOP-altered patients without other concurrent mutations.