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Open Access Highly Accessed Review

Prognostic factors in prostate cancer

A Buhmeida1*, S Pyrhönen1, M Laato3 and Y Collan2

Author Affiliations

1 Departments of Oncology and Radiotherapy, Turku University Hospital, Turku, Finland

2 Departments of Pathology, Turku University Hospital, Turku, Finland

3 Departments of Surgery, Turku University Hospital, Turku, Finland

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Diagnostic Pathology 2006, 1:4  doi:10.1186/1746-1596-1-4

Published: 3 April 2006

Abstract

Prognostic factors in organ confined prostate cancer will reflect survival after surgical radical prostatectomy. Gleason score, tumour volume, surgical margins and Ki-67 index have the most significant prognosticators. Also the origins from the transitional zone, p53 status in cancer tissue, stage, and aneuploidy have shown prognostic significance. Progression-associated features include Gleason score, stage, and capsular invasion, but PSA is also highly significant. Progression can also be predicted with biological markers (E-cadherin, microvessel density, and aneuploidy) with high level of significance. Other prognostic features of clinical or PSA-associated progression include age, IGF-1, p27, and Ki-67. In patients who were treated with radiotherapy the survival was potentially predictable with age, race and p53, but available research on other markers is limited. The most significant published survival-associated prognosticators of prostate cancer with extension outside prostate are microvessel density and total blood PSA. However, survival can potentially be predicted by other markers like androgen receptor, and Ki-67-positive cell fraction. In advanced prostate cancer nuclear morphometry and Gleason score are the most highly significant progression-associated prognosticators. In conclusion, Gleason score, capsular invasion, blood PSA, stage, and aneuploidy are the best markers of progression in organ confined disease. Other biological markers are less important. In advanced disease Gleason score and nuclear morphometry can be used as predictors of progression. Compound prognostic factors based on combinations of single prognosticators, or on gene expression profiles (tested by DNA arrays) are promising, but clinically relevant data is still lacking.