ABSTRACT: Many patients with prostate cancer have disease recurrence following surgical removal of tumors and fail to respond to androgen ablation therapy. Despite the existence of a number of clinical/pathological factors, it is not possible to predict which patients will fall into this category. The results of our previous studies demonstrated that the HOXB13 homeodomain protein plays a key role in the development of prostate cancer and the progression of this malignancy. In addition, HOXB13 has been reported to predict estrogen-resistant breast cancer tumors. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether HOXB13 could be used as a molecular marker to predict prostate cancer recurrence. To examine the role of HOXB13 as a molecular marker with clinical/pathological data, the expression of HOXB13 was compared using immunohistochemistry in 57 organ-confined prostate cancer tumors obtained by radical prostatectomy. There was no significant correlation between the expression of HOXB13 and most clinical/pathological parameters, including tumor margin, invasion, pathological stage and risk level. The HOXB13 expression levels correlated with the Gleason score and there was a positive correlation with the pre-operative prostate specific antigen (PSA) levels. Accordingly, the tumor specimens from 4 patients who ultimately had biochemical failure (PSA >0.2 ng/ml), all showed a high expression of HOXB13, while their risk levels were either intermediate or high. This is the first study to report that HOXB13, together with other clinical/pathological factors, can be used as a molecular marker to predict the progression of prostate cancer.
Molecular Medicine Reports 04/2012; 5(4):901-4. · 0.42 Impact Factor