First steps towards devising urine test in prostate cancer detection - 6th most common malignant tumour in men
RESEARCHERS have made the first steps towards devising a urine test for detecting prostate cancer, according to a paper released by the British journal Nature.
A chemical fingerprint called sarcosine can be found in high levels in the urine of men with aggressive cancer of the prostate, providing a potential biomarker of the disease.
Concentrations of sarcosine were high in 79 per cent of samples with metastatic prostate cancer and in 42 per cent of the samples of early-stage cancer, the team found.
The telltale metabolite is a better indicator of advancing disease than a standard blood test, the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) assay, according to the research, headed by Arul Chinnaiyan of the University of Michigan, Medical School.
The findings have to be confirmed and calibrated independently before the urine test is accepted as a diagnostic tool.