Prostate cancer, the most commonly diagnosed cancer among men in North America, is generally treated with hormonal therapy. If the cancer spreads to other sites in the body and no longer responds to hormonal therapy, it is called metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC). It is treated with drugs such as abiraterone acetate and enzalutamide, which target androgen function, and docetaxel and cabazitaxel, which target microtubule dynamics.
The chemotherapies currently used to treat this cancer have significant side effects. Further, nearly all patients with mCRPC develop resistance to these treatments, resulting in significant pain, suffering, and death. The goal of the SU2C–PCF Prostate Dream Team is to improve the outcomes for men with mCRPC who are no longer responsive to treatment by understanding the causes of resistance and developing treatments to overcome them.
The team has explored the idea that resistance is a result of the prostate cancer cells using common cellular responses, called adaptive pathways, to elude current therapies. The team members believe that by identifying these pathways and inhibiting them, they will be able to overcome treatment resistance and profoundly improve survival and quality of life for patients.