New Delhi, Feb. 15: Scientists have spotted a new chemical fingerprint of aggressive prostate cancer that may lead to better diagnosis and effective treatment strategies tailored for individual patients.
A research team in the US has identified a molecule named sarcosine in the urine of patients with prostate cancer that may be used to distinguish between benign, slow-growing, and aggressive prostate tumours.
"One of the biggest challenges in prostate cancer is determining if the cancer is aggressive. We end up over-treating patients because physicians don't know which tumours will be slow-growing," said Arul Chinnaiyan, professor of pathology at the University of Michigan and lead author of the study that revealed the sarcosine-cancer link. The study appeared in the journal Nature.
"We've identified a potential marker for aggressive tumours," Chinnaiyan said.
The study suggests that sarcosine, a product of complex cellular activity, is a better indicator of aggressive, invasive and advancing cancer than the traditional prostate-specific antigen (PSA) used today.
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