What does analysis of the last five years of literature on prostate specific antigen tell us about the priorities of the field and the major contributors to it?
Mark Hillen |
Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) is a glycoprotein enzyme secreted by the epithelial cells of the prostate gland. Its main role is to liquefy semen in the seminal coagulum, thus allowing sperm to swim freely. Small amounts are also present in the serum of men with healthy prostates. Crucially, many prostate disorders elevate serum PSA levels, one of which is prostate cancer. Our cover feature draws attention to the big debate over the value of PSA screening for the detection of prostate cancer.
To provide insight into what research has been performed on this topic, a series of metrics were applied to the last five years of the published literature. We asked:
- What are the major topics for the field?
- Which publications have the greatest impact?
- How is the knowledge available online?
- Who are the most prolific authors?
PubMed, was searched for prostate cancer AND “prostate specific antigen” with results limited to the last five years, in humans (for a clinical focus). The data were analyzed in Microsoft Excel 2013.