IGF2 is a mitogenic foetal growth factor commonly over-expressed in cancers, including prostate cancer (PC). We recently demonstrated that insulin can activate de novo steroidogenesis in PC cells, a major pathway for reactivation of androgen pathways and PC progression. IGF2 can activate the IGF1 receptor (IGF1R) or insulin receptor (INSR) or hybrids of these two receptors. We therefore hypothesized that IGF2 may contribute to PC progression via de novo steroidogenesis. IGF2 mRNA but not IGF2 receptor mRNA expression was increased in patient samples during progression to castrate-resistant PC as was immunoreactivity to INSR and IGF1R antibodies. Treatment of androgen receptor (AR)-positive PC cell lines LNCaP and 22RV1 with IGF2 for 48 h resulted in increased expression of steroidogenic enzyme mRNA and protein, including steroid acute regulatory protein (StAR), cytochrome p450 family member (CYP)17A1, aldo–keto reductase family member (AKR)1C3 and hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (HSD)17B3. IGF2 treatment resulted in increased steady state steroid levels and increased de novo steroidogenesis resulting in AR activation as demonstrated by PSA mRNA induction. Inhibition of the IGF1R/INSR signalling axis attenuated the effects of IGF2 on steroid hormone synthesis. We present a potential mechanism for prostatic IGF2 contributing to PC progression by inducing steroidogenesis and that IGF2 signalling and related pathways present attractive targets for PC therapy.
Amy A Lubik, Jennifer H Gunter, Brett G Hollier, Susan Ettinger, Ladan Fazli, Nataly Stylianou, Stephen C Hendy, Hans H Adomat, Martin E Gleave, Michael Pollak, Adrian Herington, and Colleen C Nelson
Lisa K Philp, Anja Rockstroh, Martin C Sadowski, Atefeh Taherian Fard, Melanie Lehman, Gregor Tevz, Michelle S Libério, Charles L Bidgood, Jennifer H Gunter, Stephen McPherson, Nenad Bartonicek, John D Wade, Laszlo Otvos, and Colleen C Nelson
Hyperleptinaemia is a well-established therapeutic side effect of drugs inhibiting the androgen axis in prostate cancer (PCa), including main stay androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) and androgen targeted therapies (ATT). Given significant crossover between the adipokine hormone signalling of leptin and multiple cancer-promoting hallmark pathways, including growth, proliferation, migration, angiogenesis, metabolism and inflammation, targeting the leptin axis is therapeutically appealing, especially in advanced PCa where current therapies fail to be curative. In this study, we uncover leptin as a novel universal target in PCa and are the first to highlight increased intratumoural leptin and leptin receptor (LEPR) expression in PCa cells and patients' tumours exposed to androgen deprivation, as is observed in patients' tumours of metastatic and castrate resistant (CRPC) PCa. We also reveal the world-first preclinical evidence that demonstrates marked efficacy of targeted leptin-signalling blockade, using Allo-aca, a potent, specific, and safe LEPR peptide antagonist. Allo-aca-suppressed tumour growth and delayed progression to CRPC in mice bearing LNCaP xenografts, with reduced tumour vascularity and altered pathways of apoptosis, transcription/translation, and energetics in tumours determined as potential mechanisms underpinning anti-tumour efficacy. We highlight LEPR blockade in combination with androgen axis inhibition represents a promising new therapeutic strategy vital in advanced PCa treatment.