The role of the androgen receptor in the development and progression of bladder cancer.

Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Rochester Medical Center, 601 Elmwood Avenue, Box 626, Rochester, NY 14642, USA.
Japanese Journal of Clinical Oncology (Impact Factor: 1.75). 05/2012; 42(7):569-77. DOI: 10.1093/jjco/hys072
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Men are at a higher risk of developing bladder cancer than women. Since bladder cancer cell lines and tissues were found to express the androgen receptor, efforts have been made to inspect whether androgen-mediated androgen receptor signals are implicated in bladder carcinogenesis as well as cancer progression. Mounting evidence supports the view that bladder cancer is a member of the endocrine-related tumors and may clearly explain the gender-specific difference in the incidence. However, the underlying mechanisms of how androgen receptor signals regulate bladder cancer growth are still far from fully characterized. Moreover, it remains controversial whether the androgen receptor pathway always plays a dominant role in bladder cancer progression. In this review, we summarize the available data on the involvement of androgen receptor signaling in bladder cancer. In particular, current evidence demonstrating the stimulatory effects of androgens on tumor progression or, more convincingly, tumorigenesis via the androgen receptor pathway may offer great potential for androgen deprivation as a therapeutic or chemopreventive option in patients with bladder cancer.

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