Regulating oestrogen in men may lead to treatment for prostate cancer and benign prostate hyperplasia
A special type of oestrogen-regulating drug may reverse the progression of prostate cancer and prostate swelling (benign prostate hyperplasia, or BHP), according to a group from Monash University, Melbourne presenting its results at the Society for Endocrinology conference in London.
Oestrogens are normally thought of as a female hormone, but recently scientists have found that oestrogens have vital roles to play in men’s health; without estrogens at all men are tall and overweight and develop diabetes. Now scientists are beginning to realise that oestrogen also has a major role to play in the development of the prostate gland and may contribute to common male problems, prostate cancer and BHP.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in British men, with more than 30,000 new cases diagnosed every year. 43% of British men over the age of 65 suffer from BHP.
There are two types of receptors for the hormone oestrogen, oestrogen-receptor-alpha and oestrogen receptor-beta. A group of scientists led by Professor Gail Risbridger (Monash University, Melbourne) have tested compounds that selectively activate one but not the other receptor. Thus, they can turn on one receptor eg oestrogen receptor alpha without affecting oestrogen receptor beta and vice versa.
Working in animals, they found that regulating the oestrogen receptor beta was beneficial and stopped the development of prostate hyperplasia. Whereas the bad effects of estrogens are due to activation of the oestrogen receptor alpha and are linked to malignancy.
Presenting her results at the conference in London, Professor Risbridger said
“We still have to try the drugs in humans, but so far these are very promising results. This work holds out the possibility that we may be able to help patients with benign disease as well as men with prostate cancer, by using these designer drugs.
Ideally, we would want to promote the good effects of oestrogen receptor beta and block the bad effects of oestrogen receptor alpha.
It's interesting work, and we are pleased that preclinical testing may translate into real benefits for patients”.
The work is being presented at the Society for Endocrinology conference, but it has also just been accepted for publication in the journal Endocrinology; for the abstract of the Endocrinology article, see:
Jo Thurston | alfa
The most recent press releases about innovation >>>
Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:
Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.
As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...
Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...
For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.
While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...
An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.
The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...
A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...