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Prostate Cancer

The Department of Urology is at the forefront of research and medical advancements in prostate cancer. 

Northwestern University scientists work closely with Northwestern Medicine physicians to translate scientific discoveries into meaningful solutions for patients.

Our comprehensive prostate cancer program offers innovative, personalized treatment to optimize patient outcomes and reduce side effects of cancer treatment, apply state-of-the-art imaging techniques to detect urologic cancers, and enhance overall well-being with recovery and survivorship programs.

Selected Media 

Edward Schaeffer, MD, PhD, and his research team aim to better understand racial disparities in prostate cancer in order to improve identification, treatment selection and outcomes for men of all races with prostate cancer. Dr. Schaeffer shares some of the exciting developments currently underway at Northwestern. Watch here

Dr. Schaeffer is conducting research to identify the molecular mechanisms associated with aggressive prostate cancer, which will permit the exploration of effective therapeutic modalities and development of robust biomarkers for treatment intensification and improved clinical outcomes. In this video, he shares details about and future directions of this work. Watch here

Ashley Ross, MD, PhD, is conducting research on the development, testing and implementation of novel diagnostics and therapeutics with a goal of reducing the suffering from prostate cancer. In this video, Dr. Ross describes the biomarker-driven clinical trials that are showing promise for prostate cancer and other future research directions in the field. Watch here

Dr. Ross specializes in ablative therapies of the prostate. In this podcast, Dr. Ross discusses the role and efficacy of focal therapy in the management of prostate cancer. He talks about recent advances, patient selection and future directions for this emerging "middle ground" treatment modality. Listen here

In this video, Dr. Ross explains the genetics of prostate cancer, describing how genetics can impact cancer development and prognosis and how genetic testing aids in treatment selection. Watch here

Men with inflammatory bowel disease have four to five times higher risk of being diagnosed with prostate cancer, according to a 20-year study from Northwestern Urology published in the journal European Urology. In this podcast, Shilajit Kundu, MD, chief of Urologic Oncology discusses the link between prostate cancer and inflammatory bowel disease. Listen here


Selected Publications

Murphy AB, Abern MR, Liu L, Wang H, Hollowell CMP, Sharifi R, Vidal P, Kajdacsy-Balla A, Sekosan M, Ferrer K, Wu S, Gallegos M, King-Lee P, Sharp LK, Ferrans CE, Gann PH. Impact of a Genomic Test on Treatment Decision in a Predominantly African American Population With Favorable-Risk Prostate Cancer: A Randomized Trial. J Clin Oncol. 2021 May 20;39(15):1660-1670. 

A pilot trial of pembrolizumab plus prostatic cryotherapy for men with newly diagnosed oligometastatic hormone-sensitive prostate cancer. Ross AE, Hurley PJ, Tran PT, Rowe SP, Benzon B, Neal TO, Chapman C, Harb R, Milman Y, Trock BJ, Drake CG, Antonarakis ES.  Prostate Cancer Prostatic Dis. 2020 Mar;23(1):184-193.

CDKN1B Deletions are Associated with Metastasis in African American Men with Clinically Localized, Surgically Treated Prostate Cancer. Faisal FA, Murali S, Kaur H, Vidotto T, Guedes LB, Salles DC, Kothari V, Tosoian JJ, Han S, Hovelson DH, Hu K, Spratt DE, Baras AS, Tomlins SA, Schaeffer EM, Lotan TL.  Clin Cancer Res. 2020 Jan 22.

Small-Molecule MYC Inhibitors Suppress Tumor Growth and Enhance Immunotherapy. Han H, Jain AD, Truica MI, Izquierdo-Ferrer J, Anker JF, Lysy B, Sagar V, Luan Y, Chalmers ZR, Unno K, Mok H, Vatapalli R, Yoo YA, Rodriguez Y, Kandela I, Parker JB, Chakravarti D, Mishra RK, Schiltz GE, Abdulkadir SA. Cancer Cell. 2019 Nov; 36(5): 483-497.e15.

Transcriptomic Heterogeneity of Androgen Receptor Activity Defines a de novo low AR-Active Subclass in Treatment Naïve Primary Prostate Cancer.Spratt DE, Alshalalfa M, Fishbane N, Weiner AB, Mehra R, Mahal BA, Lehrer J, Liu Y, Zhao SG, Speers C, Morgan TM, Dicker AP, Freedland SJ, Karnes RJ, Weinmann S, Davicioni E, Ross AE, Den RB, Nguyen PL, Feng FY, Lotan TL, Chinnaiyan AM, Schaeffer EM.  Clin Cancer Res. 2019 Nov 15;25(22):6721-6730.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease and the Risk of Prostate Cancer. Burns JA, Weiner AB, Catalona WJ, Li EV, Schaeffer EM, Hanauer SB, Strong S, Burns J, Hussain MHA, Kundu SD. European Urology. 2019 May; 75(5): 846-852.

Does prostate volume correlate with Vitamin D deficiency among men undergoing prostate biopsy? Murphy AB, Nyame YA, Batai K, Kalu R, Khan A, Gogana P, Dixon M, Macias V, Kajdacsy-Balla A, Hollowell CMP, Catalona WJ, Kittles R. Prostate Cancer and Prostatic Diseases. 2017 Mar; 20(1): 55-60.

Associations between serum Vitamin D and adverse pathology in men undergoing radical prostatectomy. Nyame YA, Murphy AB, Bowen DK, Jordan G, Batai K, Dixon M, Hollowell CMP, Kielb S, Meeks JJ, Gann PH, Macias V, Kajdacsy-Balla A, Catalona WJ, Kittles R. Journal of Clinical Oncology. 2016 Apr; 34(12): 1345-1349.


 Patient Care

Our comprehensive prostate cancer program offers ppersonalized, integrative and innovative care for the diagnosis, treatment and management of prostate cancer. Housed within the Polsky Urologic Cancer Institute, we offer a multidisciplinary access point for prostate cancer treatments, such as surgery, chemotherapy and radiation, as well as resources, including genetic counseling and nutritional guidance. Bolstering promising, active research while strengthening advanced tracking and diagnostic techniques, we offer precision diagnosis and treatment, groundbreaking innovation in treatment and prevention and sustained wellness beyond diagnosis and treatment through our survivorship and follow-up care services.

Learn more about our state-of-the art comprehensive prostate cancer program at Northwestern Medicine

Specialty Chief


Shilajit Kundu, MD
Chief of Urologic Oncology in the Department of Urology
Associate Professor of Urology

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