In experiments reported in the journal Nature, scientists from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute have identified 10 metabolites that become more profuse in prostate cells as the cancer progresses. They identified one of these metabolites, sarcosine, as appearing to be directly related to prostate cancer cell invasion into surrounding tissue.

We constantly hear the complaint that too many men are over treated for prostate cancer and that the current diagnostic test, the PSA, is over used. The significant underlying problem is that we end up over treating early stage cancers because physicians do not know which tumors will be slow growing and which will be aggressive. They have identified a potential marker for the aggressive tumors claim the senior study author Arul Chinnaiyan, M.D., Ph.D. director of the Michigan Center for Translational Pathology and S.P. Hicks Endowed Professor of Pathology at the U-M Medical School.

The researchers have demonstrated that as prostate cancer develops and progresses in a man, sarcosine levels increase in both tumor cells and urine samples. This suggests tha