Androgen Receptor Function and Targeted Therapeutics Across Breast Cancer Subtypes

Emily A. Kolyvas; Carlos Caldas; Kathleen Kelly; Saif S. Ahmad


Breast Cancer Res. 2022;24(79) 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction


Despite significant progress in breast cancer (BC) therapy, it is globally the most commonly diagnosed cancer and leads to the death of over 650,000 women annually. Androgen receptor (AR) is emerging as a potential new therapeutic target in BC. While the role of AR is well established in prostate cancer (PCa), its function in BC remains incompletely understood. Emerging data show that AR's role in BC is dependent on several factors including, but not limited to, disease subtype, tumour microenvironment, and levels of circulating oestrogens and androgens. While targeting AR in PCa is becoming increasingly effective, these advances have yet to make any significant impact on the care of BC patients. However, this approach is increasingly being evaluated in BC and it is clear that improvements in our understanding of AR's role in BC will increase the likelihood of success for AR-targeted therapies. This review summarizes our current understanding of the function of AR across BC subtypes. We highlight limitations in our current knowledge and demonstrate the importance of categorizing BC subtypes effectively, in relation to determining AR activity. Further, we describe the current state of the art regarding AR-targeted approaches for BC as monotherapy or in combination with radiotherapy.