New androgen prostate cancer pathway found

November 8, 2006

U.S. scientists have discovered a specific biochemical pathway involved in the development of prostate cancer.

The pathway is used by the sex hormone androgen, which increases levels of harmful chemicals called reactive oxygen species in the prostate gland that play a role in the development of prostate cancer.

The scientists at the Carbone Comprehensive Cancer Center in Madison, Wis., found a drug that blocks the pathway significantly prolonged survival and inhibited tumor development in mice that were genetically engineered to spontaneously develop prostate cancer and die of the disease.

The hope is that the drug can eventually be used to treat men at high risk of developing prostate cancer and to prevent recurrences in men already treated for primary tumors.

The research was presented Wednesday by the study's principal investigator, Dr. Hirak Basu, during an international cancer conference in Prague, Czech Republic.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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