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† B. A Race-Specific Cancer Test

Narrator: This is Science Today. Detecting prostate cancer in African American men, who have a higher risk of the disease, may be more efficient if ethnicity is taken into account. Urologist Joseph Presti of the University of California, San Francisco says a seldom used screening test called PSA Density, seems to detect cancer in black men more effectively than the standard blood test, simply called PSA.

Presti: We donít know exactly why, I mean, what this study showed was that we could not rely just on PSA in and of itself to determine who needs a biopsy.

Narrator: Presti says thatís because although an elevated PSA level in general results in cancer one out of three times, the PSA density test, when race specific, has different results.

Presti: Again, only one in three white men had cancer, however when we looked at blacks, it was one in two. So, we donít know why this happens, but the observation does appear to be a real one. That itís a more efficient test in black men.

Narrator: For Science Today, Iím Larissa Branin.