Detection of Loss of Heterozygosity (LOH) Using Circulating Cell-free DNA (cfDNA) by Fluorescence-based Multiplex PCR for Identification of Patients With Prostate Cancer

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Abstract

Several lines of evidence suggest that loss of heterozygosity (LOH) in specific chromosomal regions is a common mechanism for the inactivation of tumor-suppressor genes that are implicated in the pathogenesis of prostate cancer (PCa). Short tandem repeat (STR) sequences are extremely reliable genetic markers for the detection of LOH associated with cancers. Hence, in the current study, we investigated the detection of LOH at 6 STR markers (D8S360, D9S1748, D9S171, D8S137, D6S1631, and THRB) using blood circulating cell-free DNA (cfDNA), which can be used to distinguish PCa from benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). A total of 136 individuals were included in the study, 76 male patients diagnosed with PCa (50 male patients with localized PCa and 26 male patients with metastatic PCa) as experimental subjects and 60 male patients with BPH as controls. Circulating cfDNA was extracted from plasma samples and amplified with fluorescence-labeled primers specific for known STR markers. We also evaluated the serum prostate-specific antigen in both groups. Our findings revealed that the frequency of LOH at D8S360, D9S1748, D9S171, D8S137, and D6S1631 was significantly higher in PCa subjects than in controls (P<0.05). Of the 6 STR markers, LOH at D8S360 could discriminate metastatic PCa from localized PCa. We found that 71.05% of patients with PCa and 1.66% of BPH subjects had LOH at least at 3 of the markers in cfDNA. Our findings provide additional evidence to support the hypothesis that analysis of LOH at D8S360, D9S1748, D9S171, D8S137, and D6S1631 STR markers using cfDNA can be applied as a noninvasive diagnostic approach for the detection of PCa.

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