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doctor holding prostate cancer sign
Could an experimental drug be the way forward in treating aggressive prostate cancer?

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) estimate that 164,690 people will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2018.

They suggest that more than 11 percent of men will receive this diagnosis at some point during their lifetime.

Treatments for prostate cancer can include radiation therapy, hormone therapy, and chemotherapy.

But unfortunately, in many cases, tumors that recur after the initial treatment become largely unresponsive to therapy.

In a landmark study, scientists from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) have not only pinpointed the factors that render some prostate cancers so resilient, but they have also identified an experimental drug that can neutralize these defenses and eliminate the tumors.

"We have learned," says senior study author Davide Ruggero, "that cancer cells become 'addicted' to protein synthesis to fuel their need for high-speed growth, but this dependence is also a liability: too much protein synthesis can become toxic."

"We have discovered the molecular restraints that let cancer cells keep their addiction under control and showed that if we remove these restraints they quickly burn out under the pressure of their own greed for protein."

The researchers' findings were published in the journal Science Translational Medicine.

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