TMPRSS2:ERG gene aberrations may provide insight into pT stage in prostate cancer

TMPRSS2:ERG gene aberration may be a novel marker that improves risk stratification of prostate cancer before definitive cancer therapy, but studies have been inconclusive.

The study cohort consisted of 202 operable prostate cancer Slovenian patients who underwent laparoscopic radical prostatectomy. We retrospectively constructed tissue microarrays of their prostatic specimens for fluorescence in situ hybridization, with appropriate signals obtained in 148 patients for subsequent statistical analyses.

The following genetic aberrations were found: TMPRSS2:ERG fusion, TMPRSS2 split (a non-ERG translocation) and ERG split (an ERG translocation without involvement of TMPRSS2). TMPRSS2:ERG gene fusion happened in 63 patients (42 %), TMPRSS2 split in 12 patients and ERG split in 8 patients. Association was tested between TMPRSS2:ERG gene fusion and several clinicopathological variables, i.e., pT stage, extended lymph node dissection status, and Gleason score, correcting for multiple comparisons. Only the association with pT stage was significant at p = 0.05: Of 62 patients with pT3 stage, 34 (55 %) had TMPRSS2:ERG gene fusion. In pT3 stage patients, stronger (but not significant) association between eLND status and TMPRSS2:ERG gene fusion was detected. We detected TMPRSS2:ERG gene fusion in 64 % of the pT3 stage patients where we did not perform an extended lymph node dissection.

Our results indicate that it is possible to predict pT3 stage at final histology from TMPRSS2:ERG gene fusion at initial core needle biopsy. FISH determination of TMPRSS2:ERG gene fusion may be particularly useful for patients scheduled to undergo a radical prostatectomy in order to improve oncological and functional results.

BMC urology. 2016 Jul 04*** epublish ***

Zoran Krstanoski, Nadja Kokalj Vokac, Andreja Zagorac, Boris Pospihalj, Miha Munda, Saso Dzeroski, Rastko Golouh

Department of Urology, General Hospital Slovenj Gradec, Gosposvetska 1, 2380, Slovenj Gradec, Slovenia. ., Laboratory of Medical Genetics, University Medical Centre Maribor, Maribor, Slovenia., Laboratory of Medical Genetics, University Medical Centre Maribor, Maribor, Slovenia., Division of Gynecology, Department of Gynecological Pathology and Cytology, University Medical Center Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia., Institute for Anatomy, Histology and Embryology, Medical Faculty, University of Maribor, Maribor, Slovenia., Jozef Stefan Institute, Ljubljana, Slovenia., Institute of Pathology, Medical Faculty University of Maribor, Maribor, Slovenia.