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Onco Targets Ther. 2012;5:119-25. doi: 10.2147/OTT.S32559. Epub 2012 Jul 4.

Potential use of STAT3 inhibitors in targeted prostate cancer therapy: future prospects.

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Department of Pharmacology and Physiology, New Jersey Medical School, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Newark, NJ, USA.


In 2012, prostate cancer will once again be the second-leading cause of cancer death of American males. Although initially treatable, prostate cancer can recur in a hormone refractory form that is not responsive to current available therapies. The mortality rate associated with hormone refractory prostate cancer is high, and there is an urgent need for new therapeutic agents to treat prostate cancer. A common feature of prostate cancer is the dependence on activated signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3), a transcription factor, for survival. More important, inhibition of STAT3 has been shown to induce apoptosis in prostate cancer cells. In recent years, inhibitors of STAT3 have emerged as promising molecular candidates for targeted prostate cancer therapy. The aim of this review is to examine the role of STAT3 in prostate cancer and how inhibitors of STAT3 could advance the quest for treatment of the disease. Janus kinase 2 (JAK2)-targeted therapy appears very promising in the treatment of prostate cancer. It has been shown to decrease symptoms associated with myeloproliferative disorders and increase overall survival of patients compared with the best available therapy. In addition to improved outcome, many JAK2 inhibitors have been found to be tolerable with no adverse impact on quality of life. As such, JAK2 inhibitors may play an important role in the management of patients with prostate cancer. Current studies are evaluating the role of JAK2 inhibitors in solid tumors. Pending clinical trial results will determine the future direction of JAK2 inhibitors in the treatment of patients with prostate cancer.


JAK2 inhibitors; targeted cancer therapy; therapy development; transcription factors

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