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BACKGROUND: We have previously shown that a panel of kallikrein markers--total prostate-specific antigen (PSA), free PSA, intact PSA and human kallikrein-related peptidase 2 (hK2)--can predict the outcome of prostate biopsy in men with elevated PSA. Here we investigate the properties of our panel in men subject to clinical work-up before biopsy. METHODS: We applied a previously published predictive model based on the kallikrein panel to 262 men undergoing prostate biopsy following an elevated PSA (≥ 3 ng/ml) and further clinical work-up during the European Randomized Study of Prostate Cancer screening, France. The predictive accuracy of the model was compared to a "base" model of PSA, age and digital rectal exam (DRE). RESULTS: 83 (32%) men had prostate cancer on biopsy of whom 45 (54%) had high grade disease (Gleason score 7 or higher). Our model had significantly higher accuracy than the base model in predicting cancer (area-under-the-curve [AUC] improved from 0.63 to 0.78) or high-grade cancer (AUC increased from 0.77 to 0.87). Using a decision rule to biopsy those with a 20% or higher risk of cancer from the model would reduce the number of biopsies by nearly half. For every 1000 men with elevated PSA and clinical indication for biopsy, the model would recommend against biopsy in 61 men with cancer, the majority (≈80%) of whom would have low stage and low grade disease at diagnosis. CONCLUSIONS: In this independent validation study, the model was highly predictive of prostate cancer in men for whom the decision to biopsy is based on both elevated PSA and clinical work-up. Use of this model would reduce a large number of biopsies while missing few cancers.

Original publication




Journal article


BMC Cancer

Publication Date





Aged, Area Under Curve, Biopsy, Early Detection of Cancer, Europe, France, Humans, Kallikreins, Male, Middle Aged, Models, Statistical, Prostate-Specific Antigen, Prostatic Neoplasms, Reproducibility of Results, Treatment Outcome