A team of researchers from the NCI-designated Dan L Duncan Cancer Center at Baylor College of Medicine has received a $1 million, two-year grant from the Prostate Cancer Foundation to study a new way to attack treatment-resistant prostate cancer growth.

Led by Dr. Bert O'Malley, chair of molecular and cellular biology at BCM and Dr. Nicholas Mitsiades, co-investigators on the grant include Dr. Nancy Weigel, Dr. Ming-Jer Tsai, Dr. Francesco DeMayo, Dr. Michael Ittman, and Dr. Sean McGuire, all of BCM.

The team will focus on new ways to block androgen receptor signaling activity ­a key driver of prostate cancer growth and treatment resistance.

O'Malley and his colleagues have identified a group of proteins called p160 SRCs (steroid receptor cofactors) that are essential for androgen receptor activity and are associated with shorter time to disease recurrence and promote more aggressive disease.

In the lab and in animal studies, they will test a series of new compounds that might inhibit this activity and serve as new approaches to attack treatment-resistant prostate cancer growth.

The team received one of nine recently announced new challenge awards totaling $9 million from the Prostate Cancer Foundation.

The challenge awards are designated to support cross-disciplinary teams of investigators in areas of prostate cancer research and highly-innovation research projects with potential near-term patient benefits.