Molecular alterations in prostate cancer and association with MRI features

Prostate Cancer Prostatic Dis. 2017 Dec;20(4):430-435. doi: 10.1038/pcan.2017.33. Epub 2017 Aug 1.


Background: Multiparametric magnetic resonance imaging (mpMRI) has been increasingly used for prostate cancer (PCa). Recent studies identified distinct molecular subclasses of PCa with recurrent genomic alterations. However, the associations between molecular alterations in PCa and characteristics on mpMRI are unknown. Therefore, the objective of this study was to investigate recurrent molecular alterations in PCa and their associations with mpMRI features.

Methods: Sixty-two PCa nodules >0.5 cm had a preoperative mpMRI. Nodules were evaluated for ERG rearrangement, PTEN deletion, SPINK1 overexpression, SPOP mutation and CHD1 deletion. Each PCa focus was matched to the corresponding location on mpMRI. Lesions were scored by single observer according to the PI-RADSv2 scale.

Results: Of the 62 nodules, 22 (35.5%) were ERG positive, 6 (9.7%) had SPINK1 overexpression, 6 (9.7%) had SPOP mutations, 4 (6.5%) had CHD1 deletions and 1 (1.6%) had PTEN deletion. All of the nodules with CHD1 deletions were not visible on mpMRI (P=0.037). All of the nodules with SPINK1 overexpression were visible on mpMRI, although the association was not statistically significant (P=0.06). There were no significant associations between any molecular alteration with the severity of the PI-RADS scores (all P>0.05).

Conclusions: This investigation represents the first description of an association between recurrent molecular alterations and the characterization of PCa nodules on mpMRI. This study can be considered hypothesis-generating for future studies to rigorously evaluate the association of specific PCa molecular subclasses with imaging features and potentially define specific subsets of PCa for which the utility of MRI is higher or lower.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • DNA Helicases / genetics
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic / genetics
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mutation
  • Nuclear Proteins / genetics
  • PTEN Phosphohydrolase / genetics
  • Prostate / diagnostic imaging*
  • Prostate / pathology
  • Prostate / surgery
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / surgery
  • Repressor Proteins / genetics
  • Transcriptional Regulator ERG / genetics
  • Trypsin Inhibitor, Kazal Pancreatic / genetics


  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • ERG protein, human
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Repressor Proteins
  • SPINK1 protein, human
  • SPOP protein, human
  • Transcriptional Regulator ERG
  • Trypsin Inhibitor, Kazal Pancreatic
  • PTEN Phosphohydrolase
  • PTEN protein, human
  • DNA Helicases
  • CHD1 protein, human