Now, e-nose to sniff out prostate cancer using urine samples
Researchers have established that a novel noninvasive technique can detect prostate cancer using an electronic nose.
In a proof of principle study, the eNose successfully discriminated between prostate cancer and benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) by "sniffing" urine headspace (the space directly above the urine sample).
The eNose used in the current study is a device that consists of a cluster of nonspecific sensors. When the device is exposed to the sample, it produces a profile or a "smell print."
Lead investigator Niku KJ. Oksala, MD, PhD, DSc, of the Department of Surgery, School of Medicine, University of Tampere and Department of Vascular Surgery, Tampere University Hospital, Finland, said eNoses have been studied in various medical applications, including early detection of cancer, especially from exhaled air.
Oksala said however, exhaled air is a problematic sample material since it requires good cooperation and technique from the patient and immediate analysis, while urine is simple to attain and store, and is therefore more feasible in clinical practice. Preliminary data suggested that detection of urologic malignancies from urine headspace was possible.
The ChemPro 100-eNose (Environics Inc., Mikkeli, Finland) was tested on 50 patients who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer confirmed by biopsy, and 15 patients with BPH. Results confirmed that using urine headspace, the eNose is able to discriminate prostate cancer from BPH. The eNose achieved a sensitivity of 78 per cent, specificity of 67 per cent and AUC of 42.0.
The study has been published in the Journal Of Urology.
(Posted on 03-05-2014)