The importance of androgens and androgen receptors (AR) in primary prostate cancer is well established. Metastatic disease is usually treated with some form of androgen ablation, which is effective for a limited amount of time. The role of AR in prostate cancers that recur despite androgen ablation therapy is less certain. Most of these tumors express prostate specific antigen (PSA), an androgen-regulated gene; moreover, AR is generally highly expressed in recurrent prostate cancer. We propose that AR continues to play a role in many of these tumors and that it is not only the levels of AR, ligands, and co-regulators, but also the changes in cell signaling that induce AR action in recurrent prostate cancer. These pathways are, therefore, potential therapeutic targets.
Copyright 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.