Prostate Cancer Prognosis, Treatment Response Informed by Breast Cancer Expression Signature

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – A gene expression-based classification signature originally developed for distinguishing luminal and basal breast cancer cases is showing promise classifying prostate cancer cases in ways that help predict response to post-operative androgen deprivation therapy.

Researchers from the US and Canada applied a gene expression-based classifier called PAM50 — commercially developed by NanoString Technologies as the Prosigna test — to nearly 3,800 retrospectively or prospectively collected prostate cancer samples. With the assay, they successfully classified prostate cancers as luminal A, luminal B, and basal subtypes with distinct survival patterns and androgen deprivation therapy response rates. The study appeared online this week in JAMA Oncology.

“The clinical validation of the established breast cancer PAM50 signature for men with prostate cancer will help physicians to predict which patients are most likely to benefit from postoperative hormone therapy, allowing for personalized patient selection, potentially improving treatment outcomes and sparing many patients from unnecessary toxicity,” senior author Felix Feng, a radiation oncology and urology researcher at UCSF, said in a statement.

Though prostate cancer prognostic signatures have been extensively explored, it remains challenging to reliably predict which prostate cancer cases will respond to a given treatment approach, he and his colleagues explained.

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