Robust genetic testing guidelines in the prostate cancer space must be supported by strong clinical research before they can be properly implemented, says William J. Catalona, MD.
Research into genetic testing as a tool for localized diagnosis is still in its early days across most cancer types, and prostate cancer is no exception, according to William J. Catalona, MD.
In a conversation with CancerNetwork® during the 2023 Society of Urologic Oncology (SUO) Annual Meeting, Catalona, a professor of urology at the Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, emphasized the necessity of conducting additional genetic studies in the prostate cancer space to collect firm evidence. From there, robust guidelines can be drafted and implemented.
We're relatively early in the phase of genetic studies of prostate cancer. Many of [our] colleagues may not be as familiar with all of the latest developments if their area is focused in, say, radiation therapy, medical oncology, or other areas. Hopefully, they [have] learned a little something about what's current in the genetics of prostate cancer [from my presentation]. The other thing is that we really need to [base] our clinical guidelines for managing patients on firm scientific evidence. Without the genetic research, that firm scientific evidence is not there. Once we have the firm scientific evidence, then we have robust guidelines. But then we have to move beyond the robust guidelines into a field called implementation science, where we have to persuade the doctors and patients out there to do the right thing because there's good scientific evidence to support adopting these guidelines.
Catalona WJ. Localized diagnosis: genetic testing. 2023 Society of Urologic Oncology (SUO) Annual Meeting; November 28-December 1, 2023; Washington, DC.