Objective: To determine whether measurement of telomere DNA content (TC) in prostate biopsy tissue predicts prostrate-specific antigen (PSA) recurrence in men after undergoing radical prostatectomy for prostate cancer. Methods: Slot blot titration assay was used to quantitate TC in archived diagnostic prostate needle biopsy specimens for subjects (n = 103) diagnosed with prostate cancer and who subsequently underwent radical prostatectomy between 1993 and 1997. TC was compared to the clinical outcome measure; PSA recurrence, defined as an increase in PSA ≥ 0.2 ng/mL on 2 or more consecutive measurements post-prostatectomy, was observed retrospectively, for a mean follow-up period of 114 months (range, 1-165). Results: In the cohort, 46 subjects had a PSA recurrence. In a univariate Cox proportional hazards model, low TC (<0.3 of standard) demonstrated a significant risk for PSA recurrence (HR = 1.94; 95% CI: 1.02-3.69, P = .04). In a subset analysis of men with biopsy Gleason sum ≤ 6 (n = 63; 25 recurrences), a univariate Cox proportional hazards model demonstrated that low TC had a greater risk of PSA recurrence (HR = 4.53; 95% CI: 2.00-10.2, P < .01). In a multivariate Cox proportional hazards model, low TC was also significantly associated with PSA recurrence in this subset after controlling for preoperative PSA levels (HR = 6.62; 95% CI: 2.69-16.3, P < .01). Conclusions: Low TC measured in prostate biopsy tissue predicts early likelihood of post-prostatectomy PSA recurrence in a retrospective analysis, and in men with biopsy Gleason sum ≤ 6 disease it is also independent of preoperative PSA level.
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