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Integr Cancer Ther. 2014 Sep;13(5):386-95. doi: 10.1177/1534735414534728. Epub 2014 May 26.

Beyond androgen deprivation: ancillary integrative strategies for targeting the androgen receptor addiction of prostate cancer.

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Catalytic Longevity, Carlsbad, CA, USA
Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.
National Nutrition and Food Sciences Technology Research Institute, Tehran, Iran.


The large majority of clinical prostate cancers remain dependent on androgen receptor (AR) activity for proliferation even as they lose their responsiveness to androgen deprivation or antagonism. AR activity can be maintained in these circumstances by increased AR synthesis--often reflecting increased NF-κB activation; upregulation of signaling pathways that promote AR activity in the absence of androgens; and by emergence of AR mutations or splice variants lacking the ligand-binding domain, which render the AR constitutively active. Drugs targeting the N-terminal transactivating domain of the AR, some of which are now in preclinical development, can be expected to inhibit the activity not only of unmutated ARs but also of the mutant forms and splice variants selected for by androgen deprivation. Concurrent measures that suppress AR synthesis or boost AR turnover could be expected to complement the efficacy of such drugs. A number of nutraceuticals that show efficacy in prostate cancer xenograft models--including polyphenols from pomegranate, grape seed, and green tea, the crucifera metabolite diindolylmethane, and the hormone melatonin--have the potential to suppress AR synthesis via downregulation of NF-κB activity; clinical doses of salicylate may have analogous efficacy. The proteasomal turnover of the AR is abetted by diets with a high ratio of long-chain omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids, which are beneficial in prostate cancer xenograft models; berberine and sulforaphane, by inhibiting AR's interaction with its chaperone Hsp90, likewise promote AR proteasomal degradation and retard growth of human prostate cancer in nude mice. Hinge region acetylation of the AR is required for optimal transactivational activity, and low micromolar concentrations of the catechin epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) can inhibit such acetylation--possibly explaining the ability of EGCG administration to suppress androgenic activity and cell proliferation in prostate cancer xenografts. Hence, it is proposed that regimens featuring an N-terminal domain-targeting drug, various nutraceuticals/drugs that downregulate NF-κB activity, and/or supplemental intakes of fish oil, berberine, sulforaphane, and EGCG have potential for blocking proliferation of prostate cancer by targeting its characteristic addiction to androgen receptor activity.


EPI-001; Hsp90; NF-kappaB; androgen receptor; prostate cancer; transactivating domain

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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