The Proveri Prostate Cancer Assay (PPCA™)
About PPCA ™
Proveri Inc. investigators and collaborators have developed a “multigene signature” for the diagnosis of prostate cancer based on the analysis of non-tumor portions of the prostate gland. This novel research is based on the discovery that the activities of numerous genes in non-tumor cells of the prostate are physically altered by the presence of tumor. The effects of tumor cells are not confined to the tumor. Tumor cells secrete numerous powerful molecules that alter the neighboring cells - the stroma cells - over large distances from the edge of the tumor. Proveri Inc. and collaborators have detected 114 gene activity changes in these non-tumor cells (reference.). The changes allow us to detect the “presence of tumor” by using prostate tissue far from tumor. Many experts including David Bostwick and co-workers (1) estimate that conventional biopsy methods fail to detect prostate cancer in up to 30% of routine biopsy procedures. This translates to over 300,000 such cases in the U.S. every year. The Proveri Inc. method would avoids these “false negative” biopsy results. The ability to detect gene activities in neighboring stroma allows us to assess biopsy tissue that does not contain histological recognizable tumor to determine the “presence of tumor”.
In partnership with AltheaDx Inc. of San Diego, this technology is being adapted for application to formalin-fixed paraffin tissue blocks, the standard way biopsy material is stored for all patients that have had a prostate biopsy procedure. Thus “negative” case that remain of concern owing to unusual histological findings such a PIN (prostate intraepithelial neoplasia) or ASAP (atypical small acinar proliferation) or clinical signs of disease such as repeatedly high PSA values or a palpable prostate nodule as revealed by a DRE (digital rectal examination) maybe assessed by examining the tissue in the preserved paraffin blocks using our genomics based test.