Can mathematical models predict the outcomes of prostate cancer patients undergoing intermittent androgen deprivation therapy?

R. A. Everett, A. M. Packer, Yang Kuang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations

Abstract

Androgen deprivation therapy is a common treatment for advanced or metastatic prostate cancer. Like the normal prostate, most tumors depend on androgens for proliferation and survival but often develop treatment resistance. Hormonal treatment causes many undesirable side effects which significantly decrease the quality of life for patients. Intermittently applying androgen deprivation in cycles reduces the total duration with these negative effects and may reduce selective pressure for resistance. We extend an existing model which used measurements of patient testosterone levels to accurately fit measured serum prostate specific antigen (PSA) levels. We test the model's predictive accuracy, using only a subset of the data to find parameter values. The results are compared with those of an existing piecewise linear model which does not use testosterone as an input. Since actual treatment protocol is to re-apply therapy when PSA levels recover beyond some threshold value, we develop a second method for predicting the PSA levels. Based on a small set of data from seven patients, our results showed that the piecewise linear model produced slightly more accurate results while the two predictive methods are comparable. This suggests that a simpler model may be more beneficial for a predictive use compared to a more biologically insightful model, although further research is needed in this field prior to implementing mathematical models as a predictive method in a clinical setting. Nevertheless, both models are an important step in this direction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)173-191
Number of pages19
JournalBiophysical Reviews and Letters
Volume9
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2014

Keywords

  • Droop equation
  • Prostate cancer
  • androgen deprivation therapy
  • model
  • prostate specific antigen

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Structural Biology
  • Molecular Biology

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