Objective: Because of its long latency, slow growing nature, and high prevalence, prostate cancer is the best model for chemoprevention. High-grade prostate intraepithelial neoplasia (HGPIN) is a precursor of prostate cancer. Chemoprevention with lycopene has shown definite results in prostate cancer. We undertook a study to use lycopene as a chemopreventive agent in the treatment of HGPIN for preventing prostate cancer from developing in this vulnerable group of patients.
Materials and methods: A total of 40 patients with HGPIN were randomized into 2 groups: one received 4 mg lycopene twice a day for one year, and the other was periodically followed up. Total follow-up was one year.
Results: Our results show that lycopene can delay or prevent HGPIN from developing into occult prostate cancer, and there exists an inverse relationship between lycopene and prostate-specific antigen. Being a vegetable carotenoid, lycopene is a safe drug to be used for a longer period without any adverse reaction.
Conclusion: Lycopene is an effective chemopreventive agent in the treatment of HGPIN, with no toxicity and good patient tolerance.