Isolation and characterization of urinary extracellular vesicles from patients with castration-resistant prostate cancer

Prostate cancer (PCa) is the most commonly diagnosed malignancy among men in developed countries. The five-year survival rate for men diagnosed with early-stage PCa is approximately 100%, while it is less than 30% for castration-resistant PCa (CRPC). Currently, the detection of prostate-specific antigens as biomarkers for the prognosis of CRPC is criticized because of its low accuracy, high invasiveness, and high false-positive rate. Therefore, it is important to identify new biomarkers for prediction of CRPC progression. Extracellular vesicles (EVs) derived from tumors have been highlighted as potential markers for cancer diagnosis and prognosis. Specifically, urinary EVs directly reflect changes in the pathophysiological conditions of the urogenital system because it is exposed to prostatic secretions. Thus, detecting biomarkers in urinary EVs provides a promising approach for performing an accurate and non-invasive liquid biopsy for CPRC.

In this study, Incheon National University researchers effectively isolated urinary EVs with low protein impurities using size-exclusion chromatography combined with ultrafiltration. After EV isolation and characterization, the researchers evaluated the miRNAs in urinary EVs from healthy donors and patients with CRPC. The results indicated that miRNAs (miR-21-5p, miR-574-3p, and miR-6880-5p) could be used as potential biomarkers for the prognosis of CRPC. This analysis of urinary EVs contributes to the fast and convenient prognosis of diseases, including CRPC, in the clinical setting.

Schematic illustration of extracellular vesicle (EV) isolation using polyethylene glycol (PEG) precipitation or size exclusion chromatography and analysis from the urine of healthy donors and patients with CRPC.

Lee H, Kang SJ, Lee J, Park KH, Rhee WJ. (2022) Isolation and Characterization of Urinary Extracellular Vesicles from Healthy Donors and Patients with Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer. Int J Mol Sci 23(13):7134. [article]

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