The enzymes thymidylate synthase (TS), dihydropyrimidine dehydrogenase (DPD), thymidine phosphorylase (TP), and orotate phosphoribosyl transferase (OPRT) are involved in the metabolism of the anticancer drug 5-fluorouracil. No reports have examined the expression of these enzymes in prostate cancer (CaP). A total of 25 previously untreated, hormone-sensitive CaP tissue samples and 11 benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) specimens were examined. Tissue of CaP and BPH tissue samples were obtained from formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded sections by laser-captured microdissection, and then RNA was extracted. mRNA expression of TS, DPD, TP, and OPRT was analyzed by quantitative reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction. TS and OPRT expression levels were significantly higher in CaP samples than in BPH. DPD expression level in poorly differentiated CaP was significantly lower than that in CaP with more favorable--well or moderately differentiated--histopathology.