- Human pathology

Home > Technical section > Biomarkers > Biomarkers by tumors > Biomarkers in prostate cancers

Biomarkers in prostate cancers

Tuesday 31 July 2012

Prostate cancer is the second most common cause of cancer in men but if caught and treated early has a 90% cure rate, thus early detection is imperative.


  • CEA is a non-specific cancer antigen produced in response to malignant cells.
  • In the prostate Tumour PSA Array, CEA is measured in addition to total and free PSA.
  • Therefore testing for CEA simultaneously with PSA provides a more accurate diagnosis of prostate cancer.


  • AFP is a protein produced by the developing foetus and also by certain tumours.
  • AFP levels in healthy adults are low thus elevated levels may indicate the presence of a tumour such as testicular or ovarian tumours.

- hCG

  • hCG is a hormone produced in pregnancy and is not normally elevated in healthy adults.
  • hCG, secreted by some cancers, is a very sensitive test for tumour presence.
  • Simultaneous measurement of all three markers can be used to monitor the effects of treatment and recurrence of disease.


- Tumour PSA Array Analytes (Randox)

  • Free Prostate Specific Antigen (fPSA)
  • Total Prostate Specific Antigen (tPSA)
  • Carcinoembryonic Antigen (CEA)

- Tumour Array 3 (Monitoring) Analytes (Randox - PDF)

  • Carcinoembryonic Antigen (CEA)
  • Alpha-Fetoprotein (AFP)
  • Human Chorionic Gonadotrophin (hCG)

The Tumour Array 3 contains CEA in addition to AFP and hCG.

Methylation profiling



- A tissue biopsy-based epigenetic multiplex PCR assay for prostate cancer detection. Van Neste L, Bigley J, Toll A, Otto G, Clark J, Delr√©e P, Van Criekinge W, Epstein JI. BMC Urol. 2012 Jun 6;12(1):16. PMID: 22672250