Background: Urokinase-type plasminogen activator (u-PA) has been reported to overexpress in several types of human cancers and correlate with cancer progression. The present study was performed to evaluate the significance of expression of u-PA on the progression of prostate cancer.
Materials and methods: Expression of u-PA protein was investigated immunohistochemically on paraffin-embedded section from 61 patients with untreated prostate cancer. The correlation between the u-PA expression and clinical outcome was examined.
Results: u-PA was expressed in the cytoplasm of glandular cells of 56% patients. Higher expression of u-PA protein was positively correlated with bone metastasis (p = 0.011). The cause-specific survival rate was significantly lower in u-PA-positive patients than that in u-PA-negative patients (p = 0.0012). In those with bone metastasis, patients with u-PA expression had worse cause-specific survival than those without u-PA expression (p = 0.030).
Conclusion: Increased expression of u-PA is a feature of bone metastasis in patients with prostate cancer. u-PA expression is a prognostic factor in patients with prostate cancer.