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Distinguishing between low- and high-grade prostate cancers (PCa) is important, but biopsy may underestimate the actual grade of cancer. We have previously shown that urine/plasma-based prostate-specific biomarkers can predict high grade PCa. Our objective was to determine the accuracy of a test using cell-free RNA levels of biomarkers in predicting prostatectomy results.


This multicenter community-based prospective study was conducted using urine/blood samples collected from 306 patients. All recruited patients were treatment-naïve, without metastases, and had been biopsied, designated a Gleason Score (GS) based on biopsy, and assigned to prostatectomy prior to participation in the study. The primary outcome measure was the urine/plasma test accuracy in predicting high grade PCa on prostatectomy compared with biopsy findings. Sensitivity and specificity were calculated using standard formulas, while comparisons between groups were performed using the Wilcoxon Rank Sum, Kruskal-Wallis, Chi-Square, and Fisher’s exact test.


GS as assigned by standard 10-12 core biopsies was 3 + 3 in 90 (29.4%), 3 + 4 in 122 (39.8%), 4 + 3 in 50 (16.3%), and > 4 + 3 in 44 (14.4%) patients. The urine/plasma assay confirmed a previous validation and was highly accurate in predicting the presence of high-grade PCa (Gleason ≥3 + 4) with sensitivity between 88% and 95% as verified by prostatectomy findings. GS was upgraded after prostatectomy in 27% of patients and downgraded in 12% of patients.


This plasma/urine biomarker test accurately predicts high grade cancer as determined by prostatectomy with a sensitivity at 92-97%, while the sensitivity of core biopsies was 78%.

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