VTT Logo Globally around 300,000 men seem to die from prostate cancer each year and hence, it is considered as the second most common cause of cancer death. Well, a novel means to restrict the growth of prostate cancer cells has now been introduced. Investigators from the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and the University of Turku claim that the antibiotic ‘monensin’ is capable of stopping the growth of prostate cancer cells.

During the research, scientists noted that small amounts of compounds disulfiram (Antabus), thiram, tricostatin A, and monensin prevent the growth of prostate cancer cells. These compounds probably do not create a significant impact on the growth of normal human prostate epithelial cells. Monensin presumably declines the amount of testosterone receptor and increases production of reactive oxygen species. As a result, DNA damage is induced and prostate cancer cell seemingly destroyed.

It appears that monensin have combined effects with anti-androgens in avoiding prostate cancer cell growth. The anti-androgens drugs are known to curb effects of androgens. Senior Research Scientist Kristiina Iljin from VTT and colleagues claim that anti-androgens can improve the inducing production of reactive oxygen species. Employment of monensin seems to be extremely beneficial in the health zone.

The research was published in the Molecular Cancer Therapeutics journal in December 2010.