The Journal European Urology has just published a summary of a special meeting arranged by the Prostate Cancer Foundation (USA) where stakeholders and 18 opinion leaders in the field from across the globe were invited to discuss androgen receptor variants (ARvs) in prostate cancer. ARvs are an aberrant (or mutated) form of the androgen receptor. The androgen receptor is a protein that binds androgens (e/g/ testosterone) which drives prostate cancer development. It has been established that when testosterone is removed from the body through androgen deprivation therapies, these ARvs prevail which then allow prostate cancer to progress.
Centre members, Dr Luke Selth and Professor Wayne Tilley from the Dame Roma Mitchell Cancer Research Laboratories were among the invited experts. Luke and Wayne have led research, and continue to do so, that have contributed to new knowledge on the role that ARvs play in both prostate and breast cancer, and in particular advanced disease This research has been funded by grants from the US Department of Defense, the Ray and Shirl Norman Cancer Research Trust, and going forward Movember/National Breast Cancer Foundation and the National Health and Medical Research Council.
Blood-based tests are now available that detect particular ARvs that identify men who have poor outcomes to existing therapies that target the androgen receptor. Because of therapy resistance, the meeting highlighted the importance of continuing the development of novel therapeutic agents that may better target disease where ARvs are active.
Left to right: Prof Ganesh Raj (Uni of Texas SouthWestern), A/Prof Scott Dehm (Uni of Minnesota), Dr Gert Attard (Institute of Cancer Research, London), Dr Joshua Lang (Uni of Wisconsin) Dr Luke Selth (DRMCRL and FFCMH) and Dr Amina Zoubeidi (Vancounver Prostate Cancer Centre).