New Target to Fight Prostate Cancer Progression Found

New Target to Fight Prostate Cancer Progression Found
In a new study entitled “Expression and Functional Role of Orphan Receptor GPR158 in Prostate Cancer Growth and Progression” researchers report the discovery of a new promising target – GPR158 – for therapeutics against prostate cancer. The study was published in the journal Plos One. Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related mortality in men, with new cases diagnosed in 233,000 individuals in 2014 alone resulting in 29,480 deaths in the U.S. according to data retrieved from the National Cancer Institute. During the early stages of the disease, prostate tumor patients are treated with androgen deprivation therapy (ADT), since the tumor feeds on this hormone to grow. However, the disease ultimately progresses to a stage designated as castration-resistant prostate cancer – a more aggressive stage -- and becomes resistant to ADTs requiring more aggressive treatments. In this study, a research team at the Keck Medicine of the University of Southern California (USC) investigated the potential role of G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) in prostate cancer due to their increased expression in a variety of cancers, leading to tumor growth. Notably, these receptors are efficient molecular targets for drug therapeutics. Researchers identified that a new member of GPCRs family, GPR158, has an important role in prostate cancer. The team found that GPR158 promotes tumor growth independently of androgen receptor functions. GPR158 expression is increased in response to androgens, establishing GPR158 as an androgen-responsive element. On the other hand, GPR158 was found to stimulate expression of androgen receptors. The authors were then able to uncover a positive-feedback loop regulated by androgen. This may be important for tumor growth since
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