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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Comparison of phosphatase isoenzymes PAP and PSA with bone scan in patients with prostate carcinoma.

The aim of this study was to assess the diagnostic value of five biological markers--prostate acid phosphatase (PAP), prostate specific antigen (PSA), tartrate resistant (Tr-ACP), and tartrate labile (TI-ACP) acid phosphatases, and alkaline phosphatase bone isoenzyme (B-ALP)--for the detection of bone metastases in patients with prostate carcinoma. Using the Tc-99m HMDP bone scans of 80 patients scored from 0 (normal) to 2 (diffuse bone involvement) as the "gold standard," a receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis was performed. This method allows the determination of different threshold values (corresponding to different couples of sensitivity and specificity) for the assays. An ROC curve comparison was also performed. Results show that B-ALP is the best test for such detection (area under the ROC curve = 0.93; Spearman Rank correlation with bone scan r' = 0.81). Among the other markers, PSA was found to be the best (area under the ROC curve = 0.81; Spearman Rank correlation with bone scan r' = 0.58). In addition to the prostatic tumor markers (PSA and PAP), we suggest the use of the low-cost B-ALP assay in the follow-up of prostate carcinoma patients to determine the optimum moment to perform a bone scan. A normal result of this assay indicates a very low probability of bone metastasis; conversely, raising of B-ALP concentration must lead to a bone scan.[1]


  1. Comparison of phosphatase isoenzymes PAP and PSA with bone scan in patients with prostate carcinoma. Amico, S., Liehn, J.C., Desoize, B., Larbre, H., Deltour, G., Valeyre, J. Clinical nuclear medicine. (1991) [Pubmed]
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