ALS Treatment, Riluzole, Shows Promise in Treating Advanced Prostate Cancer, Study Says

ALS Treatment, Riluzole, Shows Promise in Treating Advanced Prostate Cancer, Study Says
An approved treatment for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), called riluzole, may be an effective option for people with aggressive prostate cancer because of its ability to induce androgen receptor degradation, according to a study. The study, “Riluzole induces AR degradation via endoplasmic reticulum stress pathway in androgen‐dependent and castration‐resistant prostate cancer cells” was published in the journal The Prostate. The relationship between prostate cancer and androgen is well-known, and many treatments against this disease focus on the direct inhibition of the androgen receptor, a molecule that activates prostate cancer-related genes. Androgen deprivation therapies, which directly target the androgen receptor, are the mainstay of advanced prostate cancer treatment. But despite initial responses, almost all patients progress to castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) — an aggressive cancer that keeps growing even with low levels of testosterone, the major androgen in men. A strategy that cells use to create resistance is to produce variants (mutants or splice variants) of the androgen receptor that are not recognized by the common inhibitors. New medications to target prostate cancer are necessary. In a previous study, researchers at the Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center observed that treating CRPC cells with riluzole — approved to treat ALS in 1995 — decreased cell growth and migration capacity, while inducing cell death. Riluzole was the first FDA approved medication to treat ALS, under the brand name Rilutek. It is an oral treatment that helps reduce disease progression. To clarify the mechanism by which riluzole combats prostate cancer cells, the investigators treated different androgen-dependent and CR
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