Objective: To assess the correlation between angiogenesis and Doppler signal intensity using transrectal colour Doppler ultrasonography (CDUS) in patients with prostate cancer.
Patients and methods: The study comprised 56 patients who underwent radical prostatectomy and had untreated tumours with a volume of> 0.1 mL in the peripheral zone. CDUS images were recorded on videotape before surgery. The Doppler signal intensity in tumours was evaluated using the colour pixel intensity (PI). Microvessel density (MVD) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) immunoreactivity were determined in the prostatectomy specimens. Microvessels were identified by immunohistochemical staining of endothelial cells for CD31.
Results: The PI in the tumour correlated with MVD (P < 0.001) and increased with higher levels of VEGF immunoreactivity (P = 0.004). There was no correlation between Gleason score and MVD or PI in the tumour.
Conclusion: Blood flow assessed by CDUS may reflect the state of angiogenesis in prostate cancer. CDUS may be a useful technique for predicting tumour progression or prognosis, and may be useful for monitoring the effects of anti-angiogenic agents in the future.