Final clinical study results

NKA had high predictive value for prostate cancer


Association between natural killer cell activity (NKA)
and prostate cancer: a pilot study.


Clinical study details

This study was conducted in Toronto, Ontario, Canada by Dr. Jack Barkin and colleagues. 43 male subjects >18 years of age, who had been selected for prostate biopsy for suspected prostate cancer, were recruited between September 2015 and May 2016. NK Vue™ in vitro diagnostic device (IVDD) was used to measure NKA in these subjects prior to biopsy. NKA was compared in subjects with different prostate biopsy outcomes.


Clinical study results

This pilot study showed a high specificity (91%) and a high positive predictive value for the NKA IVDD for prostate cancer in patients selected for prostate biopsy: at NKA values >200 pg/mL, the patients had an 86% absolute risk of having prostate cancer at biopsy.

The results from this pilot study were significant and show that subjects with low values of NKA were more likely to have a positive outcome at prostate biopsy.

The Study has been published in the Canadian Journal of Urology, April 2017 (Vol. 24, Issue 2, Pages (8708–8713)). The open access PDF version can be found at: Additional information on NK cells is available by visiting


About NK Vue

NK Vue is the first commercially available IVDD that measures NKA in a small volume of stimulated whole blood. This IVDD was approved by Health Canada in December 2014 for the following indication: “NK Vue is intended for in vitro diagnostic use, for the monitoring of the immune status of individuals. Measurement of NK cell activity could be a useful tool for assessing changes in immunosurveillance, which, in turn, could be indicative of a condition or disease where NK cell activity has been shown to be affected.”


Who is ATGen

ATGen is a public immunodiagnostic company focused on the development of in vitro diagnostic devices for the analysis of patients’ immune function. Immunosurveillance performed by lymphoid cells is important in immunity against foreign antigens and tumor cells.


References:   1. Barkin J, Rodriguez-Suarez R, and Betito K. Association between natural killer cell activity and prostate cancer: a pilot study. Can J Urol. 2017;24(2):8708–8713.


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