P504S/α-methylacyl-CoA racemase: A useful marker for diagnosis of small foci of prostatic carcinoma on needle biopsy

Zhong Jiang*, Chin Lee Wu, Bruce A. Woda, Karen Dresser, Jiangchun Xu, Gary R. Fanger, Ximing J. Yang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

161 Scopus citations


Establishing a definitive diagnosis of malignancy in prostate needle biopsies with very small foci of adenocarcinoma is a major diagnostic challenge for surgical pathologists. A positive diagnostic marker specific for prostatic adenocarcinoma may enhance our ability to detect limited prostate cancer and reduce errors in diagnosis. P504S, also known as a-methylacyl-CoA racemase, recently identified by cDNA subtraction and micro-array technology, might serve as such a specific marker because it has been demonstrated to be highly expressed in prostatic adenocarcinoma, but not in benign prostatic glands. However, whether small foci of carcinoma can be reliably detected by this marker is a crucial question for its clinical application. The aim of this study was to assess the utility of P504S immunohistochemistry in detecting small amounts of prostate cancer in prostate needle biopsies. A total of 142 prostate needle biopsies, including 73 cases with a small focus of prostatic adenocarcinoma (≤1 mm) and 69 benign prostates, were examined by using immunohistochemistry for P504S and high molecular weight cytokeratin (34βE12). P504S immunoreactivity was found in 69 of 73 cases (94.5%) of carcinoma but not in any benign prostates (0 of 69) or benign glands adjacent to malignant glands. The 34βE12 immunostaining confirmed the absence of basal cells in the focus of carcinoma in all 73 cases. The high specificity and sensitivity of P504S in the detection of minimal prostatic adenocarcinoma indicated its potential diagnostic value in clinical practice. Using a combination of P504S and 34βE12 can help the diagnosis of limited prostatic adenocarcinoma on needle biopsy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1169-1174
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgical Pathology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2002


  • α-Methylacyl-CoA racemase
  • Limited prostate carcinoma
  • P504S

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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