Assessing expression of MUC1 and ZAG protein biomarkers in prostate biopsies improves prediction of adverse pathology following radical prostatectomy

Nazish Durrani, Mark Waldron, Catherine Cherry, Laurence Harewood, Mark Frydenberg, John Pedersen, John Mills

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2 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: To determine whether assessing expression of MUC1 and ZAG proteins in prostate biopsies, by immunohistochemistry, improves prediction of radical prostatectomy histopathology, which in turn predicts longer-term outcomes. Methods: We studied 231 consecutive patients managed by two experienced urologic surgeons (MF, LH). Each patient had prostate biopsies revealing cancer followed by a radical prostatectomy. Expression of MUC1 and ZAG in biopsy tissue was assessed by immunohistochemistry, masked to the radical prostatectomy histopathology. Data were analysed by Chi-square, Fischer exact test & Mann Whitney U test followed by multivariate analysis using binary logistic regression. Results: By univariate analysis, MUC1 expression in prostate biopsies was associated with worse histopathology in the radical prostatectomy specimen (p<0.023), while ZAG expression was associated with better pathology (p=0.03). By multivariate analysis decreased expression of ZAG in biopsies (p=0.02), but not MUC1 expression, improved prediction of high-risk radical prostatectomy pathology beyond conventional biopsy variables; neither MUC1 nor ZAG staining improved prediction of minimal-risk cancers. Conclusions: Assessment of ZAG expression in prostate biopsies, and possibly MUC1 expression, may improve knowledge of prostate cancers in vivo or after radical prostatectomy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalThe Open Prostate Cancer Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Biomarkers
  • MUC1
  • Prostate biopsy
  • Prostate cancer
  • ZAG

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