ISSN 1470-3947 (print) | ISSN 1479-6848 (online)

Endocrine Abstracts (2006) 12 S2

Endocrinology: It’s all about good communication

Gail Risbridger

Monash University, Melbourne, Australia.

Communication takes many forms in the endocrine system, but this talk will focus on the basic biology of endocrine hormone action.

In men, testicular androgens are essential communicator proteins for many target organs including bone, prostate and brain, but there is increasing evidence that estrogens are just as important in men as in women. Using the prostate gland to exemplify the mechanism of action of estrogens in the male, the role of systemic communication as well as epithelial-stromal cell signalling will be presented. Too much estrogen is as problematic as too little estrogen and differently involves the two estrogen subtypes ERα and ERβ in systemic or local hormone actions. The use of aromatase deficiency and selective estrogen receptor modulators reveal the aberrant and beneficial roles of estrogen in malignant and benign prostate diseases, respectively. This work has significant clinical implications for the treatment of BPH and prostate cancer.

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