BACKGROUND. Estrogen sulfotransferase (EST) and steroid sulfatase (STS) are known to be involved in in situ estrogen production in estrogen dependent human cancer such as breast cancer, but unknown in prostate cancer. MATERIALS AND METHODS. We first examined whether these enzymes above were expressed and actually involved in estrogen production and metabolism in prostate cancer cell lines (LNCaP, DU-145, and PC-3). We than examined the expression of EST and STS in human prostate cancer tissues obtained from surgery (n = 52) using immunohistochemistry. RESULTS. mRN As of both enzymes were detected in all prostate cancer cell lines examined, and the synthesis of estrone (E 1) and estradiol (E2) was also confirmed in these cell lines. In addition, STS immunoreactivity was detected in 44 cases (85%) and EST in 39 cases (75%), respectively. CONCLUSIONS. STS and EST are expressed and may be involved in local production and metabolism of estrogens in human prostate cancers.
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