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Your Environment. Your Health.

Exposure to Bisphenol A Linked with Early-Onset Prostate Cancer

Shuk-mei Ho, Ph.D.
University of Cincinnati
NIEHS Grants P30ES006096, U01ES019480, U01ES020988

In an NIEHS-supported study, researchers found that men with prostate cancer had higher urinary levels of bisphenol A (BPA), suggesting that urinary BPA level is an independent prognostic marker of prostate cancer. The investigators also report new information about a possible mechanism for how BPA affects prostate cells to transform them into cancer cells.

The researchers examined urine BPA levels in 60 urology patients and found that prostate cancer patients had higher levels of BPA, 5.74 microgram per gram (ug/g), [95 percent confidence interval (CI); 2.63, 12.51]) than patients without prostate cancer, 1.43 ug/g [95 percent CI; 0.70, 2.88]) (p = 0.012). The difference in BPA levels was even more significant in prostate cancer patients who were older than 65.

They also examined how prostate cancer and normal prostate cell lines responded to low doses of BPA. For both types of cells, BPA exposure increased the percentage of cells with more than the normal number of centrosomes two- to eight-fold and also induced other cellular changes. These findings suggest low-dose BPA may lead to the development of prostrate cancer by disrupting centrosome duplication.

Citation: Tarapore P, Ying J, Ouyang B, Burke B, Bracken B, Ho SM. 2014. Exposure to bisphenol A correlates with early-onset prostate cancer and promotes centrosome amplification and anchorage-independent growth in vitro. PLoS One 9(3):e90332.