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  • Author: Elena A. Pop x
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John J. Stocking, Michael V. Fiandalo, Elena A. Pop, John H. Wilton, Gissou Azabdaftari and James L. Mohler

Background: Eunuchs rarely, if ever, develop prostate cancer (CaP). This article reports on a 62-year-old functional eunuch from prepubertal mumps orchitis who developed clinically localized CaP. Methods: Serum and CaP and benign prostate tissue androgen levels were measured using a validated liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry assay. The assay measures testosterone; dihydrotestosterone (DHT); the adrenal androgens, androstenedione and dehydroepiandrosterone; and the androgen metabolites, androsterone and androstanedione. Gene and protein expression levels of androgen metabolism enzymes, and androgen receptor and androgen-regulated genes were measured using quantitative reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction and immunohistochemistry, respectively. Results: Intracrine androgen metabolism produced tissue DHT when serum and tissue testosterone levels were castrate and undetectable, respectively. Androgen receptor, androgen-regulated, and androgen metabolism enzyme genes were expressed but at lower levels in CaP than benign tissues. Conclusions: DHT was synthesized using the primary backdoor androgen metabolism pathway and not using androstenedione or dehydroepiandrosterone via the frontdoor or secondary backdoor pathways.