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Detection of pretreatment disseminated cells (pre-DTC) reflecting its homing to bone marrow (BM) in prostate cancer (PCa) might improve the current model to predict recurrence or survival in men with nonmetastatic disease despite of primary treatment. Thereby, pre-DTC may serve as an early prognostic biomarker. Post-treatment DTCs (post-DTC) finding may supply the clinician with additional predictive information about the possible course of PCa. To assess the prognostic impact of DTCs in BM aspirates sampled before initiation of primary therapy (pre-DTC) and at least 2 years after (post-DTC) to established prognostic factors and survival in patients with PCa. Available BM of 129 long-term follow-up patients with T1-3N0M0 PCa was assessed in addition to 100 BM of those in whom a pretreatment BM was sampled. Patients received either combined therapy [n = 81 (63%)], radiotherapy (RT) with different duration of hormone treatment (HT) or monotherapy with RT or HT alone [n = 48 (37%)] adapted to the criteria of the SPCG-7 trial. Mononuclear cells were deposited on slides according to the cytospin methodology and DTCs were identified by immunocytochemistry using the pancytokeratin antibodies AE1/AE3. The median age of men at diagnosis was 64.5 years (range 49.5-73.4 years). The median long-term follow-up from first BM sampling to last observation was 11 years. Categorized clinically relevant factors in PCa showed only pre-DTC status as the statistically independent parameter for survival in the multivariate analysis. Pre-DTCs homing to BM are significantly associated with clinically relevant outcome independent to the patient's treatment at diagnosis with nonmetastatic PCa.

Original publication




Journal article


Int J Cancer

Publication Date





149 - 155


Aged, Antineoplastic Agents, Hormonal, Biomarkers, Tumor, Bone Marrow, Follow-Up Studies, Humans, Immunohistochemistry, Kaplan-Meier Estimate, Male, Middle Aged, Multivariate Analysis, Neoplasm Grading, Neoplasm Staging, Neoplastic Cells, Circulating, Predictive Value of Tests, Prognosis, Proportional Hazards Models, Prostate-Specific Antigen, Prostatic Neoplasms, Radiotherapy, Adjuvant