Men with low testosterone less likely to have prostate cancer
Their research is also the largest study of the link between hormones and prostate cancer to have ever been conducted. While it is not yet known what causes the condition, researchers have identified a number of risk factors , such as age, ethnicity, and genetic mutations.
Lowering or blocking testosterone levels in the body is the standard treatment for prostate cancer because androgens help the prostate cancer cells to grow. As the authors of the new study explain, "[B]ecause the saturation point is thought to be low, until now there have been insufficient prospective data available to test this theory. The researchers examined 20 prospective studies including more than 19, men, 6, of whom had prostate cancer and 12, of whom were examined as healthy controls.
Participants were aged between 34 and 76 years old, and their blood was collected for analysis between and The researchers grouped the men into 10 categories according to their testosterone level. These ranged from those with the lowest blood levels of the androgen to those with the highest. As predicted, men in the lowest testosterone group were considerably less likely to develop prostate cancer. In fact, they had a 20 percent reduced likelihood of developing the disease. Surprisingly, however, the study also found that if these men do end up developing the disease, they are 65 percent more likely to have an aggressive form of the condition.
In the other nine groups of varying testosterone levels, the researchers found no association with prostate cancer risk. Tim Key, of the University of Oxford, also weighs in. He says, "This is an interesting biological finding that could help us understand how prostate cancer develops and progresses.
This is the first population study to support the theory that risk is lowered below a certain threshold of the hormone.
Matt Seymour, the NCRI's clinical research director, says, "In future, these results could be important in helping to devise an approach to reducing men's risk of developing the disease. Mason, "but that's very far down the line. MNT is the registered trade mark of Healthline Media. Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a healthcare professional.
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