As much you would like to joke about your wife or partner potentially being the death of you, there is something else that has crept up.

In recent years, prostate cancer has become a huge concern for males, as such; doctors and scientists have been trying to figure out exactly how aggressive this disease can be and how it can be combated.

Scientists at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute have for the first time, identified that there are five various types of prostate cancer and have been able to make distinctions between them.

This ground breaking study was published in the EBioMedicine journal and could have significant implications for how doctors and scientists study and treat prostate cancer. It also means that this research can assist them in pin – pointing which tumours are aggressive and spreads rapidly throughout the body.

Our exciting results show that prostate cancer can be classified into five genetically different types,” says Dr Alastair Lamb, who is the study author at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute. He hopes their findings could assist doctors in deciding on the best course of treatment for each individual patient, based on the characteristics of their tumour.

They extracted cancerous prostate matter from 250 men, measuring activity in 100 different genes that were linked to the disease and were then able to classify them into five groups with each one having a unique trademark.

“This analysis was better at predicting which tumours were most likely to be aggressive than the tests doctors currently use, but the findings must be confirmed with a larger sample size.”

With prostate cancer becoming the most common type of cancer in men in South Africa, as according to the Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA) National Cancer Registry 2009, there were 4 601 cases reported.

This could definitely be a game changer for saving and improving the quality of life for men and your beloved sex life.

Sources: Medical Daily, EBioMedicine

Alice Paulse