Detection of smell print differences between nonmalignant and malignant prostate cells with an electronic nose

Future Oncol. 2012 Sep;8(9):1157-65. doi: 10.2217/fon.12.93.


Aim: To determine whether an electronic nose can differentiate cultured nonmalignant and malignant prostatic cells from each other and whether the smell print is secreted to the surrounding medium.

Materials & methods: Prostatic nonmalignant (EP-156T and controls) and malignant (LNCaP) cell lines, as well as conditioned and unconditioned media, were collected. The smell prints of the samples were analyzed by a ChemPro(®) 100 electronic nose device. The data were normalized and dimension reduction was conducted. The samples were classified and misclassification rates were calculated.

Results: The electronic nose differentiated the nonmalignant and malignant cell lines from each other, achieving misclassification rates of 2.9-3.6%. Cells did not differ from the conditioned medium but differed from the unconditioned medium (misclassification rates: 0.0-25.6%).

Conclusion: Malignant and nonmalignant prostatic cell lines have distinct smell prints. Prostatic cancer cells seem to modify the smell print of their medium.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Culture Media, Conditioned / analysis
  • Culture Media, Conditioned / chemistry
  • Electronic Nose*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Odorants / analysis*
  • Prostate / pathology*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms
  • Volatile Organic Compounds / analysis*
  • Volatile Organic Compounds / chemistry
  • Volatile Organic Compounds / metabolism


  • Culture Media, Conditioned
  • Volatile Organic Compounds