Jennifer Doll, PhD
About Jennifer Doll, PhD
Periprostatic Fat as a Promoter of Prostate Cancer Progression
Obesity and high fat diets are associated with more aggressive prostate cancer. Yet, the mechanism underlying this association remains unclear. Dr. Doll and colleagues hypothesize that periprostatic fat (fat adjacent to the prostate) from obese patients has an enhanced capacity to promote prostate cancer growth by increasing the level of triglycerides and fatty acids within cancer cells. Fatty acids and triglycerides have been shown to promote prostate cancer cell growth in vitro and analysis of obese patient tumor specimens revealed that many cancer cells contained fat droplets. In her proposal she plans to identify how fatty acids and triglycerides released from periprostatic fat promote prostate tumor growth and whether levels of fatty acid and triglycerides in the periprostatic fat correlate with clinical outcome. Early data from Dr. Doll’s work reveal that fat may block the production of an important protein called, PEDF. PEDF suppresses fatty acid and triglyceride accumulation and blocks new vessel growth called angiogenesis in the tumor. This study may identify new therapeutic targets, such as PEDF, for the treatment of advanced prostate cancer.
The Gordon Becker Creativity Award
NorthShore University HealthSystem Research Institute, Illinois