Aberrant DNA methylation plays a pivotal role in carcinogenesis and its mapping is likely to provide biomarkers for improved diagnostic and risk assessment in prostate cancer (PCa). We quantified and compared absolute methylation levels among 28 candidate genes in 48 PCa and 29 benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH) samples using the pyrosequencing (PSQ) method to identify genes with diagnostic and prognostic potential.
RARB, HIN1, BCL2, GSTP1, CCND2, EGFR5, APC, RASSF1A, MDR1, NKX2-5, CDH13, DPYS, PTGS2, EDNRB, MAL, PDLIM4, HLAa, ESR1 and TIG1 were highly methylated in PCa compared to BPH (p < 0.001), while SERPINB5, CDH1,
TWIST1, DAPK1, THRB, MCAM, SLIT2, CDKN2a and SFN were not. RARB methylation above 21% completely distinguished
PCa from BPH. Separation based on methylation level of SFN, SLIT2 and SERPINB5 distinguished low and high Gleason score
cancers, e.g. SFN and SERPINB5 together correctly classified 81% and 77% of high and low Gleason score cancers respectively.
Several genes including CDH1 previously reported as methylation markers in PCa were not confirmed in our study. Increasing
age was positively associated with gene methylation (p < 0.0001).
Accurate quantitative measurement of gene methylation in PCa appears promising and further validation of genes like RARB, HIN1, BCL2, APC and GSTP1 is warranted for diagnostic potential and SFN, SLIT2 and SERPINB5 for prognostic potential.