Definition of Castrate Resistant Prostate Cancer : New Insights

Juan Morote Robles, Adriana Aguilar, Jacques Planas, Enrique Trilla Herrera

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


The term castrate resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) was initially proposed by the Prostate Cancer Working Group 2 in 2008 to define the state of clinical and/or biochemical progression of prostate cancer (PCa) in an environment with very low serum testosterone concentration. Clinical progression is based on the radiological imaging proposed by the Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors (RECIST) adapted to PCa. Biochemical progression is defined as an over 25% increase in serum prostate-specific antigen within two consecutive measurements separated by at least one week, and an absolute value above 2.0 ng/mL. Finally, the castrate environment is usually defined as a serum testosterone concentration maintained below 50 ng/dL or 1.7 nmol/dL. This definition does not incorporate the new and more accurate imaging modalities to assess clinical progression and the capability of the new biochemical measurements to assess the true castration environment. Ga-68-PSMA-11 PET CT/MRI and whole-body MRI are the new imaging modalities that should replace the classic thoracic CT scan, abdomino-pelvic CT scan, and technetium 99-m bone scintigraphy. In addition, Ga-68-PSMA-11 PET is the current basis for the new therapies targeting metastatic sites. Moreover, the current methods for measuring the very low serum testosterone concentrations in clinical laboratories are the widespread chemiluminescent assays, which are inappropriate, while LC-MSMS is the only method recommended to assess the castrate environment. In addition, recent research shows that serum luteinising hormone concentration associates better than serum testosterone with the castration environment, even when it is measured with LC-MSMS. In summary, the current definition of CRPC seems outdated. An extensive update to diagnose true CRPC is also needed to differentiate CRPC men with M0 (non-metastatic) from those with M1 (metastatic) CRPC. WC: 277
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Prostate cancer
  • Castration-resistance
  • Testosterone
  • Free-testosterone
  • Luteinising-hormone


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