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Gene Expression Profile Used to Grade Prostate Cancers

Profile distinguishes low- and high-grade tumors with 76 percent accuracy

MONDAY, July 10 (HealthDay News) -- The expression pattern of a set of 86 genes can distinguish low- and high-grade prostate cancer and may contain potential therapeutic targets for the disease, according to a report published online July 7 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition.

Peter S. Nelson, M.D., from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, and colleagues used microdissection to obtain cancer tissue corresponding to the most common Gleason patterns, and from benign normal tissue, to identify molecular patterns underlying prostate cancer grades.

After amplifying the extracted DNA from each tissue, the researchers used microarray analysis to measure expression differences between normal and cancerous tissue of different grades and found a set of 86 genes that can be used to discriminate between low- and high-grade tumors with 76 percent accuracy. Their data confirmed associations made between monoamine oxidase A and defender against death (DAD1) protein and tumor grade in large microarray data sets.

"The altered expression of these genes provides functional insights into grade-associated features of therapy resistance and tissue invasion," the authors write. "Furthermore, in identifying a profile of 86 genes that distinguish high- from low-grade carcinomas, we have generated a set of potential targets for modulating the development and progression of the lethal prostate cancer phenotype."

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