The role of the FSH system in the development and progression of prostate cancer.
This article describes relationships between follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), and other modulators of prostatic cancer, in order to help optimize treatment decisions. A comprehensive literature search of PubMed and relevant congress abstract databases was conducted using combinations of the key words prostate cancer, follicle-stimulating hormone, vascular endothelial growth factor, inhibins/activins, gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH)/luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) receptor agonists/antagonists, and angiogenesis/neo-genesis. This was followed by a consensus meeting of prostate cancer experts to discuss current knowledge surrounding FSH and the relevant evidence for its role in the development and progression of prostate cancer.
Our understanding of prostate cancer and its progression indicate an increase in levels of FSH and the FSH receptor, along with alterations in key modulatory proteins that regulate FSH synthesis and receptor signaling. Elevations in VEGF and differential modulation of testosterone with GnRH/LHRH agonists and antagonists may contribute to treatment outcomes. Considerable evidence supports the hypothesis that dysregulation of the FSH system plays a role in both the development and progression of prostate cancer. Data indicate that FSH can be modulated by the choice of treatment intervention, especially when androgen-deprivation therapy is used.