New Cholesterol-Fighting Compound Could Potentially Improve Prostate Cancer Treatment

RO 48-8971 may inhibit the growth of and kill prostate cancer cells.

Researchers found that a compound developed to combat cholesterol may also kill cancerous cells and stop the progression of prostate cancer.

Current prostate cancer therapy includes chemotherapeutic drugs that target androgen receptors in cancer cells, according to a study published in OncoTargets and Therapy.

“Although tumor cells may initially respond to these therapies, most eventually develop resistance that causes prostate cancer cells to grow and spread,” Salman Hyder, PhD, said in a press release. “Cholesterol also can contribute to the development of anti-hormone resistance because cholesterol is converted into hormones in tumor cells; therefore, these cholesterol-forming pathways are attractive therapeutic targets for the treatment of prostate cancer.”

The compound RO 48-8071 was originally developed to treat high cholesterol. The team of researchers found that it reduced human prostate cancer cell growth and caused cancer cell death, as well.

During the study, RO 48-8071 was injected into mice with human prostate cancer cells. The researchers found that the compound was able to reduce tumor growth.

RO 48-8071, in conjunction with chemotherapeutic drugs, could become a new, effective therapy for prostate cancer, researchers concluded.