, Volume 387, Issue 5, pp 1621-1631
Date: 01 Feb 2007

Biomolecular profiling of metastatic prostate cancer cells in bone marrow tissue using FTIR microspectroscopy: a pilot study

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Prostate cancer (CaP) cells preferentially metastasise to the bone marrow, a microenvironment that plays a substantial role in the sustenance and progression of the CaP tumour. Here we use a combination of FTIR microspectroscopy and histological stains to increase molecular specificity and probe the biochemistry of metastatic CaP cells in bone marrow tissue derived from a limited source of paraffin-embedded biopsies of different patients. This provides distinction between the following dominant metabolic processes driving the proliferation of the metastatic cells in each of these biopsies: glycerophospholipid synthesis from triacylglyceride, available from surrounding adipocytes, in specimen 1, through significantly high (p ≤ 0.05) carbohydrate (8.23 ± 1.44 cm−1), phosphate (6.13 ± 1.5 cm−1) and lipid hydrocarbon (24.14 ± 5.9 cm−1) signals compared with the organ-confined CaP control (OC CaP), together with vacuolation of cell cytoplasm; glycolipid synthesis in specimen 2, through significantly high (p ≤ 0.05) carbohydrate (5.51 ± 0.04 cm−1) and high lipid hydrocarbon (17.91 ± 2.3 cm−1) compared with OC CaP, together with positive diastase-digested periodic acid Schiff staining in the majority of metastatic CaP cells; glycolysis in specimen 3, though significantly high (p ≤ 0.05) carbohydrate (8.86 ± 1.78 cm−1) and significantly lower (p ≤ 0.05) lipid hydrocarbon (11.67 ± 0.4 cm−1) than OC CaP, together with negative diastase-digested periodic acid Schiff staining in the majority of metastatic CaP cells. Detailed understanding of the biochemistry underpinning the proliferation of tumour cells at metastatic sites may help towards refining chemotherapeutic treatment.