In a study conducted by an international team of scientists from the University Children's Hospital of Bern, and the Autonomous University of Barcelona, it was found that the production of concrete sexual human hormones, known as androgens, is interrupted. These findings may help in the development of new therapeutic approaches, since the overproduction of androgens is associated with many diseases, including cancer of the prostate in men and polycystic ovary syndrome in women.
One out of seven women in Europe are diagnosed with prostate cancer. While most cases are treated with surgical procedures and hormonal therapy, approximately 70 000 cases of tumor growth continues even after surgical castration (kantatsionno-resistant prostate cancer), where a chemotherapeutic intervention.
One of the goals was promising enzyme CYP17A1, which produces a precursor of androgens. Current treatment options include drug called abirator. However, abirator has strong side effects, and prolong life, derived from the treatment - only a few months.
Currently, the research team led by Amit Pandey from the Department of Pediatrics, Inselspital Bern and the Division of Biomedical Research of the University of Bern in collaboration with the Research Institute. Valla Dr. Hebron in Barcelona announced the gene mutation that causes damage to a particular enzyme, CYP17A1, which controls the production of androgens. The results of this study published in Open-Access «Pharmaceuticals» magazine, can lead to a more efficient therapeutic approach to the treatment of cancer, reducing the level of castration. " Abiraterone, an inhibitor of CYP17A1, was one of the biggest drugs to combat the spread of cancer. But resistance to the drug remains a serious problem. The presence of the second-line therapy, as proposed in the current study may be an effective way to monitor the progression of prostate cancer. This is the most exciting result, "- says Mark A Rubin, director of biomedical research and the researcher of prostate cancer.
Gene mutation prevents formation of androgens
Amit Pandey in Bern is studying how the preparations for the treatment of prostate cancer , and found that the drug abiraterone change many metabolic pathways. Employees Barcelona patient identified led by Dr. Laura Audi which had a loss of androgen precursor. After the genetic and biochemical laboratory tests the Spanish team was able to confirm a new mutation in the CYP17A1 gene. "I immediately realized that this was not some ordinary mutation, and is located in the center of the CYP17A1 protein which binds sex hormones", - says Pandey.
Further studies in Bern has shown that sex hormones can no longer be attached properly in the center of the defective enzyme. Biochemical studies in Bern showed that the mutated gene results in defective protein CYP17A1, which is responsible for the production of androgen precursor DHEA. Pandey hopes that this research will lead to the development of knowledge of the best preparations for the treatment of prostate cancer, and the syndrome of polycystic ovaries .