Radical prostatectomy lowers plasma vascular endothelial growth factor levels in patients with prostate cancer

Daniel J. George, Meredith M. Regan, William K. Oh, Miah Hiang Tay, Judith Manola, Niv DeCalo, Stephen Duggan, William C. DeWolf, Philip W. Kantoff, Glenn J. Bubley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Objectives. To measure the change in plasma vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) levels after radical prostatectomy (RP) and to examine the association of pre-RP VEGF levels with known prognostic factors. Methods. Plasma was collected from patients in two separate cohorts. The first cohort included 86 patients who consented to give blood before and after RP. The second cohort consisted of 280 plasma samples, obtained from untreated patients with clinically localized prostate cancer. Plasma VEGF levels were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The change in plasma VEGF before and 6 to 8 weeks after RP was analyzed using a Wilcoxon signed rank test. The associations between the pre-RP VEGF levels and prognostic factors were assessed with the Spearman correlation coefficient and the Kruskal-Wallis test. Results. In a cohort of 86 patients with clinically localized prostate cancer, the median preoperative VEGF level was 49.8 pg/mL. The median level 1 month after surgery was significantly lower at 39.1 pg/mL (P = 0.006, 20% decrease). A repeat analysis 6 months or more after surgery demonstrated that the percentage of decrease in the plasma VEGF levels persisted. Plasma VEGF levels were also measured in a separate cohort of 280 patients with localized prostate cancer and demonstrated no statistically significant association with risk groups or known tumor-associated prognostic factors. Conclusions. These results suggest that the prostate gland itself may be a significant source of systemic VEGF and raises the possibility that elevated plasma VEGF levels could be a reflection of prostatic VEGF production.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)327-332
Number of pages6
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2004


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