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Kinza Rizwan

Predoctoral Fellowship in Drug Discovery, 2023 Baylor College of Medicine

Developing a First-in-Class Therapy to Suppress Highly Aggressive Prostate Cancer


Prostate cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer-related death in men. Prostate cancer is driven by male sex hormones called androgens, and resistance to current treatments can occur through various mechanisms involving the androgen receptor, which mediates the effects of these hormones.

For my project, we explored a new approach to treating prostate cancer by targeting a protein called SPOP. Our experiments in mouse models and human prostate cancer cells showed that removing or silencing the SPOP gene significantly reduced androgen receptor signaling. This suggests that SPOP plays a crucial role in driving prostate cancer growth through the androgen receptor pathway. These findings suggest that SPOP could be a promising and innovative target for developing new therapies to combat prostate cancer, especially in cases where current treatments are no longer effective. This research holds great promise for improving the outlook for prostate cancer patients worldwide.

Learn more in this Q&A with Rizwan.

I am incredibly grateful to have been awarded the PhRMA Foundation's Predoctoral Fellowship in Drug Discovery. This recognition of my research on prostate cancer disparities is a major step forward in my journey as a PhD candidate and will greatly aid me in my efforts to make a meaningful impact in the field.

Kinza Rizwan

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