The Latest Prostate Cancer Research: Winter 2013
Chris Regal | March 1, 2013
Deep fried food may raise prostate cancer risk. According to one study, men who ate deep fried food once a week raised their risks of prostate cancer by roughly 35 percent. When cooking at extremely high temperatures, such as when deep frying, potentially carcinogenic compounds begin to form in the foods. These carcinogens raise the risk of developing prostate cancer.
High-dose radioactive pellets
For years, doctors implanted radioactive “seeds” into the prostate to kill cancerous tissue. But researchers from the U.K. have a new development. HDR brachytherapy involves a computer-controlled machine implanting a radioactive capsule in the prostate. The radiation is contained within the prostate, not damaging the bladder or rectum, so patients return to normal activity within days.
Researchers from Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine have identified so-called oncolytic viruses, where the manipulated viruses are able to infiltrate a cancer cell and infect it. The virus hijacks the cancerous cell machinery and causes the virus to be multiplied instead of its own nucleic acids. Ultimately, the cancer becomes overwhelmed and bursts. This approach limits damage to only the cancer cells.
Exercise reduces risk
Exercise and living a healthy lifestyle can help lower your risk of prostate cancer. However, whom it effects might surprise you. In a study by the Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, African-American men did not experience the same benefits as white men from exercise. While Caucasian men saw a 53 percent drop in prostate cancer risk, no similar benefit was found for black men.
Researchers from the Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University have taken a novel approach to radiation therapy for prostate cancer. This study used volume-modulated arc therapy (VMAT) to deliver intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) to patients, resulting in a 14 percent reduction in treatment time. IMRT is a fairly standard treatment, but combining it with VMAT is a new approach.
An estimated two percent of prostate cancer cases arise in men under the age of 50. According to research from the European Molecular Biology Laboratory, genetics are to blame. In men with early-onset prostate cancer, the androgen receptors (which bind testosterone) are very active, causing genes to rearrange and become cancer-promoting.
Stressed out at work or at home? Stress activates adrenaline in the body, which can increase the risk of prostate cancer, according to new research from Wake Forest University. Researchers also learned adrenaline can block the effects of cancer-killing drugs.
Research from the University of California, Davis may have uncovered a natural, non-toxic substance that could lengthen life expectancy in prostate cancer patients. Genistein-combined polysaccharide (GCP) is cultivated from shitake mushrooms and soybeans and could assist men taking androgen-suppressing drugs. The drugs help block testosterone in the body, upon which the prostate cancer feeds.