Navigation Links
Prostate cancer's multiple personalities revealed

NEW YORK (Nov. 3, 2010) -- Scientists at Weill Cornell Medical College have taken an important step toward a better understanding of prostate cancer by uncovering evidence that it is not one disease, as previously believed, but rather several factors which can be measured and, in the future, destroyed by targeted therapy.

The research team led by of Dr. Mark A. Rubin, the Homer T. Hirst Professor of Oncology in Pathology and vice chair for experimental pathology at Weill Cornell Medical College, identified secondary mutations that cause some types of prostate cancer cells to be lethal. The team believes that their discovery will lead to better tests for prostate cancer, sparing thousands of men from unnecessary biopsies, and leading to more specific and individualized therapy for prostate cancers that are likely to become deadly. The study results were published in the Oct. 29 online edition of the journal Genome Research.

The current research expands on the team's previous work with Arul M. Chinnaiyan's group at the University of Michigan that reported the first evidence that gene fusions, hybrid genes formed from two previously separate genes, play a widespread role in prostate cancer. At the time, it was known that gene fusions could drive the development of blood cancers but were only rarely detected in common solid cancers. Their finding was hailed as a landmark discovery by colleagues when it was first published in 2005 in the journal Science.

In their newly published work, Dr. Rubin and colleagues report evidence that gene fusion prostate cancers are susceptible to secondary mutations. This novel observation supports the view that aggressive cancers need to accumulate multiple mutations. Using discoveries made in this study, clinicians may be better able to diagnose and target potentially deadly tumors.

"In the future, these fusions, specific to certain types of prostate cancer, may help physicians prescribe tailored therapies for their patients," says Dr. Rubin. "This is an important step toward providing specific therapies that target individual cancer variants, and our hope is these findings will help doctors diagnose a patient's specific disease," explains Dr. Rubin.

Prostate cancer is the most common type of non-skin cancer found in American men and is the second leading cause of cancer death in men. According to the American Cancer Society, one in six men will get prostate cancer during his lifetime, and it will kill one in 36 men. The Society estimates that there will be about 217,730 new cases of prostate cancer and about 32,050 deaths in the United States this year.

Traditionally, screening for prostate cancer has been done by a blood test known as the Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) test. However, it has not found to be as reliable as once thought. "PSA testing is inadequate. It detects men with cancer but also many men with benign conditions," according to Dr. Rubin. "As we have seen from two major studies on PSA screening, for every 100 men with a positive PSA screening, only 25 will have cancer."

Dr. Rubin's prior research has focused on a better understanding of prostate cancer and finding a test that will distinguish clinically significant prostate cancer from indolent disease that does not require additional treatment. Their research has led Dr. Rubin and his colleagues to co-develop the diagnostics for a new test for prostate cancer with the University of Michigan and two commercial partners, Gen-Probe and Ventana/Roche.

"The new test being developed will identify cells that are seen only in people with prostate cancer, allowing us to know with great certainty who has prostate cancer," according to Dr. Rubin. "This will result in fewer unnecessary biopsies, which have potential side effects, including infections, bloody semen, and rectal bleeding."


Contact: Andrew Klein
New York- Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center/Weill Cornell Medical College

Related biology news :

1. Genetic risk factors may tailor prostate cancer screening approaches
2. Prostate cancer spurs new nerves
3. Men with wives, significant others more likely to be screened for prostate cancer
4. New lab evidence suggests preventive effect of herbal supplement in prostate cancer
5. Dana-Farber oncologists present at ASCO GU -- predict prostate cancer survival using Source MDx test
6. Freezing prostate cancer does a mans body good
7. New medications show promise in treating drug-resistant prostate cancer
8. New drug shows promise in treating drug-resistant prostate cancer
9. Agent Orange exposure increases veterans risk of aggressive recurrence of prostate cancer
10. 3-D research model tackles prostate cancer spread
11. Gene activity reveals dynamic stroma microenvironment in prostate cancer
Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/29/2015)... 29, 2015 NXTD ) ... focused on the growing mobile commerce market and ... StackCommerce, a leading marketplace to discover and buy ... smart wallet on StackSocial for this holiday season. ... the "Company"), a biometric authentication company focused on ...
(Date:10/27/2015)... 2015 Munich, Germany ... technology (ASGM) automatically maps data from mobile eye tracking ... , so that they can be quantitatively analyzed with ... Munich, Germany , October 28-29, 2015. SMI,s Automated ... mobile eye tracking videos created with SMI,s Eye ...
(Date:10/26/2015)... LAS VEGAS , Oct. 26, 2015 ... in modern authentication and a founding member of the ... its latest version of the Nok Nok™ S3 Authentication ... standards-based authentication that supports existing and emerging methods of ... ideal for organizations deploying customer-facing applications that require Internet ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... , England , November 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... Medical, an innovative medical device company specializing in imaging technologies, ... from the European Commission as part of the Horizon 2020 ... company to carry out a large-scale clinical trial in breast ...      (Logo: , --> ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... 25, 2015  PharmAthene, Inc. (NYSE MKT: PIP) announced ... stockholder rights plan (Rights Plan) in an effort to ... (NOLs) under Section 382 of the Internal Revenue Code ... PharmAthene,s use of its NOLs could be substantially limited ... in Section 382 of the Code. In general, an ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... 25, 2015 Studies reveal the ... plaque and pave the way for more effective treatment for ...     --> --> ... health problems in cats, yet relatively little was understood about ... studies have been conducted by researchers from the WALTHAM Centre ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... , Nov. 25, 2015  Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. ... Gorman , President and CEO of Neurocrine Biosciences, will ... Conference in New York . ... visit the website approximately 5 minutes prior to the ... replay of the presentation will be available on the ...
Breaking Biology Technology: