Detection of prostate cancer by an electronic nose: a proof of principle study

J Urol. 2014 Jul;192(1):230-4. doi: 10.1016/j.juro.2014.01.113. Epub 2014 Feb 25.


Purpose: We evaluate the ability of an electronic nose to discriminate prostate cancer from benign prostatic hyperplasia using urine headspace, potentially offering a clinically applicable noninvasive and rapid diagnostic method.

Materials and methods: The ChemPro® 100-eNose was used to discriminate prostate cancer from benign prostatic hyperplasia using urine sample headspace. Its performance was tested with 50 patients with confirmed prostate cancer and 24 samples from 15 patients with benign prostatic hyperplasia (15 patients provided urine preoperatively and 9 patients provided samples 3 months postoperatively) scheduled to undergo robotic assisted laparoscopic radical prostatectomy or transurethral resection of prostate, respectively. The patients provided urine sample preoperatively and those with benign prostatic hyperplasia also provided samples 3 months postoperatively to be used as a pooled control sample population. A discrimination classifier was identified for eNose and subsequently, sensitivity and specificity values were determined. Leave-one-out cross-validation was performed.

Results: Using leave-one-out cross-validation the eNose reached a sensitivity of 78%, a specificity of 67% and AUC 0.77.

Conclusions: The electronic nose is capable of rapidly and noninvasively discriminating prostate cancer and benign prostatic hyperplasia using urine headspace in patients undergoing surgery.

Keywords: electronic nose; prostatic hyperplasia; prostatic neoplasms.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Electronic Nose*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Prostatic Hyperplasia / diagnosis*
  • Prostatic Hyperplasia / urine
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / urine