Prostate cancer diagnosis in the new millennium: strengths and weaknesses of prostate-specific antigen and the discovery and clinical evaluation of prostate cancer gene 3 (PCA3)


Prof Roger S. Kirby, The Prostate Centre, 32 Wimpole St, London, W1G 8GT, UK. e-mail:


The decision to take a prostate biopsy is traditionally guided by a digital rectal examination and measurement of serum total prostate-specific antigen (tPSA). However, both techniques are subject to inherent weaknesses. The prostate cancer gene 3 (PCA3), a gene-based marker, specific for prostate cancer, supplements the predictive power of tPSA to improve diagnosis of disease. Including this new marker in the standard of care for men at risk of prostate cancer should be considered, as it presents marked potential for better decision making for a prostate biopsy and for improving overall patient care.