Can biological markers replace cystoscopy? An update

Curr Opin Urol. 2001 Sep;11(5):503-9. doi: 10.1097/00042307-200109000-00009.


Cystoscopy is currently considered the gold standard for the detection of bladder tumors. The role of urine cytology in the initial detection and follow-up of patients is under discussion. New elaborative and rapid assays are available that may circumvent the low sensitivity and poor reproducibility of urine cytology. The methods that have been tested extensively are the nuclear matrix protein (NMP22) assay, the BTA stat assay, and the BTA TRAK enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Both outperform cytology in the detection of low-grade lesions. The specificity of both assays, however, lags behind that of cytology. The data from retrospective analyses are insufficient to justify clinical integration, and the need to replace cystoscopy with these novel assays remains to be proven.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers / analysis*
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis*
  • Cystoscopy / methods*
  • Female
  • Genetic Markers / genetics
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms / diagnosis*


  • Biomarkers
  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Genetic Markers