Isaac Powell, M.D., professor of Urology at the Wayne State University School of Medicine, was recently featured in an interview with WDIV-TV about prostate cancer and its prevalence and aggressiveness in Black men.
A prostate cancer survivor himself, Dr. Powell, 80, is working on developing a drug to address a more aggressive form of prostate cancer that strikes Black men.
View the Nov. 12 report here.
Dr. Powell has conducted research in the treatment of prostate cancer in Black men for more than 37 years. He served as principal investigator of a nationwide consortium of centers studying Black families with hereditary prostate cancer, which opened the door to additional studies concerning ethnic differences in the biology and genetics of prostate cancer.
His research has found that 60% of the prostate cancer genes that are differentially expressed and associated with advanced disease are different among Black men compared to European American men.
Dr. Powell discovered that prostate cancer grows more rapidly and becomes more aggressive earlier in Black men than it does in Americans of European descent. He found that traditionally recognized disparities, including the lack of access to primary medical care for Black men, did not play measurably significant roles in the differences. However, treatment decisions, high blood pressure and obesity may be partly responsible for prostate cancer outcome disparities.
His research has also suggested that Black men diagnosed with prostate cancer may require more treatment for longer periods if not diagnosed early.