ProMis will use unique skills, novel technologies and resources to test the hypothesis that ‘Prostate cancer cells are retained in a dormant state in the skeleton through interaction with a specific microenvironment and can be released from dormancy to form overt bone metastases by cell autonomous changes (‘intrinsic’) and/or microenvironment (‘extrinsic’) changes. These interactions represent new opportunities for therapeutic intervention’.
ProMis will identify the critical mechanisms responsible for prostate cancer cell dormancy, growth and metastasis to bone, determine whether existing drugs can be used more effectively, develop new treatments and pave the way for a clinical program that will impact directly on patients.
ProMis will focus on four interconnected areas with the specific aims of:
Defining the cellular and molecular mechanisms that control the transition from prostate dormancy to active tumour growth in bone.
Determining the impact of existing therapies on the mechanisms controlling the transition from dormancy to growth.
Targeting new mechanisms to prevent and treat prostate bone metastasis.
Developing approaches to widening awareness of prostate bone metastasis.