Androgen Receptor Roles in the Development of Benign Prostate Hyperplasia (BPH)
Izumi K, Mizokami A, Lin WJ, Lai KP, Chang C. Am J Pathol. 2013 Apr 6. pii: S0002-9440(13)00207-1. doi: 10.1016/j.ajpath.2013.02.028. [Epub ahead of print]


George H. Whipple Laboratory for Cancer Research, University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, New York; Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, New York; Department of Integrative Cancer Therapy and Urology, Kanazawa University, Kanazawa, Japan.


Benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH) is a major cause of lower urinary tract symptoms, with an increased volume of transitional zone and associated with increased stromal cells. It is known that androgen/androgen receptor (AR) signaling plays a key role in development of BPH, and that blockade of this signaling decreases BPH volume and can relieve lower urinary tract symptoms, but the mechanisms of androgen/AR signaling in BPH development remain unclear, and the effectiveness of current drugs for treating BPH is still limited. The detailed mechanisms of androgen/AR signaling need to be clarified, and new therapies are needed for better treatment of BPH patients. This review focuses on roles of AR in epithelial and stromal cells in BPH development. In epithelial cells, AR may contribute to BPH development via epithelial cell-stromal cell interaction with alterations of epithelial-mesenchymal transition, leading to proliferation of stromal cells. Data from several mouse models with selective knockout of AR in stromal smooth-muscle cells and/or fibroblasts indicate that the AR in stromal cells can also promote BPH development. In prostatic inflammation, AR roles in infiltrating macrophages and epithelial and stromal cells have been linked to BPH development, which has led to discovery of new therapeutic targets. For example, targeting AR with the novel AR degradation enhancer ASC-J9 offers a potential therapeutic approach against BPH development.