Alexandra Lapat Polasko

Credentials: PhD

Position title: Stanford University KUReS

Website: Institutional Profile

Polasko, a postdoctoral scholar in urology with an engineering background, will investigate the role of bone morphogenic protein 5 (BMP5) in the pathophysiology of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), a common disease that affects a large percentage of aging men with lower urinary tract symptoms.  BPH, according to Polasko, is characterized by abnormal growth of the prostate stromal and epithelial compartments.  She and colleagues have discovered that transcript levels of BMP5 produced by a subset of prostate fibroblasts are upregulated 50-fold in human BPH tissues compared to normal prostate.  “Our findings suggest BMP5 plays a promoting role in human BPH growth and BMP5 inhibition may be an effective treatment for BPH patients,” added Polasko, who will perform her research in the lab of James Brooks with additional mentorship from Sharon Pitteri and Jon Pollack.