Detection of circulating tumor cells in patients with localized and metastatic prostatic carcinoma: Clinical implications
An RT-PCR-based assay for PSA mRNA can detect circulating cells in the peripheral blood of patients with prostatic cancer. The frequency of positivity increases with tumor stage. A unique observation was the detection of cells in patients with no measurable PSA on hormonal therapy. This suggests that continued seeding of distant sites may still be occurring in these patients, despite seemingly successful therapy. The relationship between continued seeding, disease progression, and survival will require further study.