Aims: Carboxy-terminal telopeptide of type I collagen (ICTP) is a parameter of bone absorption, and has recently been introduced to monitor bone metastases. The aim of this retrospective study was to investigate the potential of ICTP as a candidate serum marker of bone metastasis in prostate cancer.
Materials and methods: Serum markers in 155 men pathologically diagnosed with prostate cancer were measured. The serum levels of ICTP, prostate-specific antigen (PSA), and alkali phosphatase (ALP) were compared to assess the extent of disease (EOD) scores from bone scans and then analysed statistically.
Results: The serum ICTP levels were not well correlated with the EOD scores in the total group of men, men newly diagnosed with prostate cancer, or men previously diagnosed with prostate cancer who were followed up. The sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV) and negative predictive value (NPV) of ICTP (cut-off value, 5.0 ng/ ml) of the men newly diagnosed with prostate cancer were 78.6%, 88.0%, 78.6%, and 88.0%, respectively. In these men, the specificity and PPV of ALP (cut-off value, 335 IU/l) were 100%, whereas the sensitivity and NPV of PSA (cut-off value, 40 ng/ml) were 100% in this study. The serum levels of ICTP in the men with low ALP (< 335 IU/l) and high PSA (> or = 40 ng/ ml) clearly separated the men with or without bone metastasis, as judged by bone scans.
Conclusion: We found that the ICTP is not a superior serum marker for bone metastases compared with ALP or PSA. Our study suggests, however, that the ICTP measurement is useful in a certain subset of men with the combination of PSA and ALP in distinguishing men with bone metastasis from those without.