Cancer is a leading cause of death in the population and despite the significant technological
advances that have been made over the last years, there is a great need for new and better treatments
with fewer side effects. Among the various types, hormone-dependent cancers are stimulated by
the presence of certain steroidal hormones such as androgens and estrogens, which act through a nuclear
receptor. The use of small molecules to block the biosynthesis (steroidogenesis) or the action of
hormones (androgens or estrogens) is a therapeutic approach that has yielded interesting results and whose development
continues. This review article emphasizes the patents and patent applications published over the last five years. It deals
exclusively with steroid compounds developed as inhibitors of key enzymes (17α-hydroxylase/17,20-lyase, steroid sulfatase,
5α-reductases, aromatase and 17β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenases) involved in the steroidogenesis and identified as
therapeutic targets. Such inhibitors could be used as a drug to reduce the concentration of androgens or estrogens and,
consequently, for treating hormone-dependent diseases such as prostate cancer, breast cancer and endometriosis.
Keywords: Androgen, cancer, endocrine therapy, enzyme, estrogen, steroid.
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