The role of estrogens and estrogen receptor signaling pathways in cancer and infertility: The case of schistosomes

Mónica C. Botelho*, Helena Alves, Alberto Barros, Gabriel Rinaldi, Paul J. Brindley, Mário Sousa

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

22 Citations (SciVal)

Abstract

Schistosoma haematobium, a parasitic flatworm that infects more than 100 million people, mostly in the developing world, is the causative agent of urogenital schistosomiasis, and is associated with a high incidence of squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) of the bladder. Schistosomiasis haematobia also appears to negatively influence fertility, and is particularly associated with female infertility. Given that estrogens and estrogen receptors are key players in human reproduction, we speculate that schistosome estrogen-like molecules may contribute to infertility through hormonal imbalances. Here, we review recent findings on the role of estrogens and estrogen receptors on both carcinogenesis and infertility associated with urogenital schistosomiasis and discuss the basic hormonal mechanisms that might be common in cancer and infertility.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)246-250
Number of pages5
JournalTrends in Parasitology
Volume31
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jun 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Cancer
  • Estrogen receptor
  • Infertility
  • Schistosomiasis
  • Schistosoma haematobium
  • Schistosomiasis haematobia/complications
  • Signal Transduction
  • Humans
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell/etiology
  • Estrogens/metabolism
  • Receptors, Estrogen/metabolism
  • Animals
  • Infertility/etiology
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms/etiology

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