Advanced prostate cancer biomarker tests can help you and your healthcare provider create a game plan that’s right for you.

Who should get prostate cancer biomarker testing?

Prostate cancer biomarker tests, also called prostate cancer marker (PCM) tests, look for molecules in the blood, urine or tissue that can signify abnormal activity. PCM tests can help you and your healthcare provider:

  • Determine your risk for prostate cancer based on genetics
  • Decide whether you should have a prostate biopsy after an abnormal PSA test
  • Know whether active surveillance after a negative biopsy is the right decision
  • Determine the best cancer treatment based on your specific tumor genetics

To see the PCM tests that can provide you and your healthcare provider with the information you need now, click on the appropriate section below.

Or if you’d prefer, complete this interactive questionnaire to see which PCM tests are appropriate for you. (Note: To exit the quiz and return here, hit escape.)


Know Your Risk

Although prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men, it is highly treatable when caught early. Knowing your risk of developing prostate cancer helps you know when to start screening for it.

Image of a man at his computer learning about prostate cancer markers.

After A PSA Test

In the past, an abnormal (high) prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test typically led to a prostate biopsy. Now, PCMs can help determine if a biopsy is the right step. PCMs prevent up to 40% of unnecessary biopsies.


After A Biopsy

After a negative prostate biopsy, PCM tests can help determine whether you are a good candidate for active surveillance. If you've had a positive prostate biopsy, PCMs help your healthcare provider determine the best type of treatment.

Senior Couple learning about PC Markers online.

Prostate Cancer Treatment

You are treating your prostate cancer and prostate cancer markers tests may enhance your treatment plan.

Senior Black man taking notes about the phi test from his computer.


Your prostate cancer has recurred and you want more insights about your cancer.

Frequently Asked Questions

Worrying about prostate cancer doesn’t need to sideline your life. Use these frequently asked questions to learn more about prostate cancer marker tests. Below are frequently asked questions.

Why should men consider additional testing beyond the PSA test?

The PSA test cannot differentiate between prostate cancer and non-cancerous (benign) conditions, such as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Men who receive a PSA level above 1.5 ng/ML should discuss additional biomarker testing with their healthcare providers prior to considering a prostate biopsy.

Do all men with elevated PSA levels have cancer?

No, in fact less than 30% of men with a PSA level >4.0 ng/mL will be diagnosed with cancer. Unfortunately, the PSA test cannot differentiate between cancer and non-cancerous conditions like an infection (prostatitis), a urinary tract infection (UTI), an enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia), or other non-cancerous conditions. Certain types of vigorous exercise, such as cycling, and sexual intercourse can stimulate the prostate and cause PSA levels to rise so men should abstain from both at least 48 hours prior to a PSA test. Regular use of certain medications including statins, NSAIDs, and thiazide diuretics have been shown to cause a decrease in PSA levels, so men should alert their physicians if taking these medications. Conversely, other medications, such as testosterone, can raise PSA levels. Having a digital rectal exam (DRE) prior to a PSA blood test can also momentarily raise PSA levels, which is why the PSA test should be conducted first. 

Because the PSA test is a simple, inexpensive blood test, it’s a great first step in identifying men who may benefit from additional testing including prostate cancer biomarkers, which can provide more insights about what is causing elevated PSA levels.

Are there any prostate cancer biomarker (PCM) tests that could help me decide if I need to have a prostate biopsy?

Although there are many factors that contribute to your healthcare provider’s decision to conduct a prostate biopsy, there are several urinary and blood based PCMs that may help guide you and your physician through the decision of conducting a prostate biopsy. These include:

Genetic tests also may be worth considering if you have a family history of prostate cancer, breast cancer, ovarian cancer or colorectal cancer. These genetic tests are recommended for men who are determined through genetic counseling to be at potential risk for hereditary cancer:

Are there any prostate cancer biomarker (PCM) tests that could help me decide what steps to take after an inconclusive prostate biopsy?

If you have a negative or atypical biopsy and are wanting more insights about prostate cancer risk, you might consider the tissue-based PCM test:

If your prostate biopsy has a Gleason Score of less than or equal to 7 or if your prostate biopsy has a Gleason Score greater than 7 and you have not yet undergone treatment (surgery or radiation), you and your healthcare provider might consider these tissue-based PCM tests: 

If your prostate biopsy has a Gleason Score greater than 7 and you have already undergone treatment, please see Waypoint 4 for additional PCM tests to consider.

Are there any prostate cancer biomarker (PCM) tests that I could consider if I’m in active surveillance for my prostate cancer?

If you are in the active surveillance stage and wondering about getting more insights into your prostate cancer, these tissue-based tests can be performed on the prostate biopsy you previously had. Results can give you peace of mind or inform your next move.

If you have not had a biopsy and are in the watchful waiting stage based on your initial PSA, DRE, or other tests, consider the PCMs and genetic tests highlighted in Waypoint 1 of the prostate cancer journey.

What prostate cancer biomarker (PCM) tests are there for late-stage prostate cancer treatment options?

A medicine that targets a specific receptor present in some prostate cancers is used to treat qualifying patients with late-stage cancer. This PCM test can help determine if you are a candidate for androgen receptor (AR) targeted therapies.

What are prostate cancer biomarkers (PCMs)?

Prostate cancer biomarkers (PCMs) are molecules found in blood, tissue, or body fluids. PCMs are revolutionary new, non-invasive diagnostic tests that may help your healthcare provider decide if your prostate cancer is in fact low risk, if something more aggressive may be lurking in your prostate, or if there are hot spots in the prostate that may need to be re-evaluated upon biopsy. PCMs also can help you and your healthcare provider determine the most appropriate treatment for your cancer.