Integrated RNA and metabolite profiling of urine liquid biopsies for prostate cancer biomarker discovery

Bongyong Lee, Iqbal Mahmud, John Marchica, Paweł Dereziński, Feng Qi, Fubo Wang, Piyush Joshi, Felipe Valerio, Inoel Rivera, Vipul Patel, Christian P. Pavlovich, Timothy J. Garrett, Gary P. Schroth, Yinghao Sun, Ranjan J. Perera

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Sensitive and specific diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers for prostate cancer (PCa) are urgently needed. Urine samples are a non-invasive means to obtain abundant and readily accessible “liquid biopsies”. Herein we used urine liquid biopsies to identify and characterize a novel group of urine-enriched RNAs and metabolites in patients with PCa and normal individuals with or without benign prostatic disease. Differentially expressed RNAs were identified in urine samples by deep sequencing and metabolites in urine were measured by mass spectrometry. mRNA and metabolite profiles were distinct in patients with benign and malignant disease. Integrated analysis of urinary gene expression and metabolite signatures unveiled an aberrant glutamate metabolism and tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle node in prostate cancer-derived cells. Functional validation supported a role for glutamate metabolism and glutamate oxaloacetate transaminase 1 (GOT1)-dependent redox balance in PCa, which could be exploited for novel biomarkers and therapies. In this study, we discovered cancer-specific changes in urinary RNAs and metabolites, paving the way for the development of sensitive and specific urinary PCa diagnostic biomarkers either alone or in combination. Our methodology was based on single void urine samples (i.e., without prostatic massage). The integrated analysis of metabolomic and transcriptomic data from these liquid biopsies revealed a glutamate metabolism and tricarboxylic acid cycle node that was specific to prostate-derived cancer cells and cancer-specific metabolic changes in urine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number3716
JournalScientific reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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