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Cholesterol study suggests new diagnostic, treatment approach for prostate cancer
Date:3/4/2014

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Researchers have discovered a link between prostate cancer aggressiveness and the accumulation of a compound produced when cholesterol is metabolized in cells, findings that could bring new diagnostic and treatment methods. Findings also suggest that a class of drugs previously developed to treat atherosclerosis might be repurposed for treatment of advanced prostate cancer.

The research showed depletion of the compound cholesteryl ester significantly reduced prostate cancer cell proliferation, impaired its ability to invade a laboratory tissue culture and suppressed tumor growth in mice.

"Our study provides an avenue towards diagnosis of aggressive prostate cancer. Moreover, we showed that depleting cholesteryl ester significantly impairs prostate cancer aggressiveness," said Ji-Xin Cheng, a professor in Purdue University's Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering and Department of Chemistry.

The research involved analysis of clinical samples harvested from prostate cancer patients, specialized cell lines and mice.

Findings are detailed in a research paper appearing Tuesday (March 4) in the journal Cell Metabolism. The paper was authored by researchers associated with Purdue's Center for Cancer Research and the Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center at Indiana University School of Medicine.

"Prostate cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer-related mortality in American men. Our finding offers a biological foundation that supports the beneficial effect of cholesterol-lowering drugs. Second, our study heralds the potential of using cholesteryl ester as a therapeutic target for advanced prostate cancer," said study co-author Timothy Ratliff, the Robert Wallace Miller Director of Purdue's Center for Cancer Research. "These results together suggest that cholesteryl ester accumulation might be used for more accurate prediction of prostate cancer aggressiveness, if
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Contact: Emil Venere
venere@purdue.edu
765-494-4709
Purdue University
Source:Eurekalert  

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