Androgen Action, Wnt Signaling, and Prostate Tumorigenesis



Androgen signaling is mainly mediated through AR and plays a critical role in prostate tumorigenesis. Current studies have shown that AR-mediated transcription is facilitated through direct or indirect interactions with different signaling pathways and coregulators. The Wnt signaling pathway and its key component, β-catenin, are critical in embryonic development and tumorigenesis. Emerging evidence suggests a promotional role of the Wnt and β-catenin signaling pathway in prostate cancer development and progression. The discovery of the interaction between AR and β-catenin provides the molecular basis for crosstalk between androgen and Wnt signaling. It has been shown that mutations in adenomatous polyposis coli (APC), β-catenin, and other components of the β-catenin destruction complex are rare in prostate cancer cells. Therefore, the molecular mechanisms underlying β-catenin oncogenic activation in prostate cancer may be different from those observed in human colorectal cancer or other malignancies. Further study of the role and regulation of Wnt signaling and β-catenin should provide fresh insight into our current knowledge of androgen action and prostate tumorigenesis, which may lead to the development of novel therapeutic strategies for prostate cancer patients.


Wnt β-Catenin Frizzled The androgen receptor Prostate cancer IGF TCF/LEF E-cadherin PI3K Akt PTEN APC 



This article was supported by National Institutes of Health Grants CA070297 and CA151623.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Urology, Department of Genetics, and Cancer Biology ProgramStanford University School of MedicineStanfordUSA

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