Dynamics of three-dimensional telomere profiles of circulating tumor cells in patients with high-risk prostate cancer who are undergoing androgen deprivation and radiation therapies

Wark L1Klonisch T2Awe J3LeClerc C4Dyck B4Quon H5Mai S6.

Author information



Accurate assessment and monitoring of the therapeutic efficacy of locally advanced prostate cancer remains a major clinical challenge. Contrary to prostate biopsies, circulating tumor cells (CTCs) are a cellular source repeatedly obtainable by blood sampling and could serve as a surrogate marker for treatment efficacy. In this study, we used size-based filtration to isolate and enumerate CTCs from the blood of 20 patients with high-risk (any one of cT3, Gleason 8-10, or prostate-specific antigen>20ng/ml), nonmetastatic, and treatment-naive prostate cancer before and after androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) and radiation therapy (RT).


We performed 3D telomere-specific quantitative fluorescence in situ hybridization on isolated CTCs to determine 3D telomere profiles for each patient before and throughout the course of both ADT and RT.


Based on the distinct 3D telomere signatures of CTC before treatment, patients were divided into 3 groups. ADT and RT resulted in distinct changes in 3D telomere signatures of CTCs, which were unique for each of the 3 patient groups.


The ability of 3D telomere analysis of CTCs to identify disease heterogeneity among a clinically homogeneous group of patients, which reveals differences in therapeutic responses, provides a new opportunity for better treatment monitoring and management of patients with high-risk prostate cancer.

KEYWORDS: Biomarkers; Circulating tumor cells; High-risk prostate cancer; Telomeres

PMID: 27956006DOI: 10.1016/j.urolonc.2016.10.018

Download PDF