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Estrogens and prostate cancer

Prostate Cancer and Prostatic Diseases (2018) | Download Citation

Abstract

Background

Hormonal influences such as androgens and estrogens are known contributors in the development and progression of prostate cancer (CaP). While much of the research to the hormonal nature of CaP has focused on androgens, estrogens also have critical roles in CaP development, physiology as well as a potential therapeutic intervention.

Methods

In this review, we provide a critical literature review of the current basic science and clinical evidence for the interaction between estrogens and CaP.

Results

Estrogenic influences in CaP include synthetic, endogenous, fungi and plant-derived compounds, and represent a family of sex hormones, which cross hydrophobic cell membranes and bind to membrane-associated receptors and estrogen receptors that localize to the nucleus triggering changes in gene expression in various organ systems.

Conclusions

Estrogens represent a under-recognized contributor in CaP development and progression. Further research in this topic may provide opportunities for identification of environmental influencers as well as providing novel therapeutic targets in the treatment of CaP.

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Affiliations

  1. Department of Urology, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA

    • Ryan W. Dobbs
    • , Neha R. Malhotra
    • , David T. Greenwald
    • , Gail S. Prins
    •  & Michael R. Abern
  2. Department of Urology, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN, USA

    • Alice Y. Wang

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Conflicts of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Michael R. Abern.

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https://doi.org/10.1038/s41391-018-0081-6