Development of noninvasive methods for the diagnosis of transitional cell carcinoma (TCC) of the bladder remains a challenge. A ProteinChip technology (surface enhanced laser desorption/ionization time of flight mass spectrometry) has recently been developed to facilitate protein profiling of biological mixtures. This report describes an exploratory study of this technology as a TCC diagnostic tool. Ninety-four urine samples from patients with TCC, patients with other urogenital diseases, and healthy donors were analyzed. Multiple protein changes were reproducibly detected in the TCC group, including five potential novel TCC biomarkers and seven protein clusters (mass range, 3.3 to 133 kd). One of the TCC biomarkers (3.4 kd) was also detected in bladder cancer cells procured from bladder barbotage and was identified as defensin. The TCC detection rates provided by the individual markers ranged from 43 to 70% and specificities from 70 to 86%. Combination of the protein biomarkers and clusters, increased significantly the sensitivity for detecting TCC to 87% with a specificity of 66%. Interestingly, this combinatorial approach provided sensitivity of 78% for detecting low-grade TCC compared to only 33% of voided urine or bladder-washing cytology. Collectively these results support the potential of this proteomic approach for the development of a highly sensitive urinary TCC diagnostic test.