(HealthDay News) — The Prostate Urine Risk (PUR) biomarker high-risk (PUR-4) classification of prostate cancer is strongly associated with the amount of Gleason Pattern 4 tumor, according to a study published online Nov. 3 in Life.

Richard Y. Ball, B.M., B.Ch., M.D., Ph.D., from the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in the United Kingdom, and colleagues examined how the PUR-4 is associated with Gleason grade, prostate volume, and tumor volume as assessed from 215 biopsy samples and nine prostatectomy samples.

The researchers found that PUR-4 status alone was linked to Gleason Grade group (GG) for biopsy data. Each GG was dichotomized into small and large volume cancers relative to median volume to assess the impact of tumor volume. Cancer volume had no impact on PUR-4 status for GG1 (Gleason Pattern 3+3). In contrast, PUR-4 levels increased in large-volume cancers for GG2 (3+4) and GG3 (4+3), with statistical significance observed for GG2.

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To further examine this observation, PUR-4 status and Gleason pattern 4 were examined in the prostatectomy samples. There was no correlation observed for PUR-4 with Gleason Pattern 3 in terms of amount, total tumor volume, or prostate size. However, there was a strong correlation observed for the amount of Gleason Pattern 4 tumor and PUR-4 signature.

“These data suggest that the PUR-4 signature could provide useful additional information in determining the amount of clinically significant tumor within a prostate and thereby help guide the patient treatment pathway with essential information for triage, improved management, and prognostic utility,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed filing a patent application for the use of PUR biomarkers in prostate cancer diagnosis and prognosis.

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