Prostate cancer is disease in which the mortality rate is highly variable among populations. An increasing risk with migratory changes suggests that some environmental factor or factors influence prostate cancer risk. It is well established that the prostate is hormonally influenced. Carcinogenesis is a process of malignant transformation evolving over time, involving cellular growth and division. There is evidence suggesting that androgenic influences over a period time encourages the process of prostate carcinogenesis. Studies of prostate biology support the concept that dihydrotestosterone is the principal androgen responsible for both normal and hyperplastic growth of the prostate gland. It may be that androgen causes prostate carcinogenesis. Suppression of dihydrotestosterone synthesis may inhibit carcinogenic transformation. Some preclinical and clinical observations support this hypothesis. A placebo controlled randomized trial using finasteride, an inhibitor of 5-α-reductase, the enzyme that converts testosterone to dihydrotestosterone, is ongoing. The endpoint of this trial is reduction of prostate cancer incidence.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Urologic Oncology: Seminars and Original Investigations|
|State||Published - Jan 1 2003|
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