BACKGROUND: Phospholipases D1 and D2 (PLD1/2) hydrolyse cell membrane glycerophospholipids to generate phosphatidic acid, a signalling lipid, which regulates cell growth and cancer progression through effects on mTOR and PKB/Akt. PLD expression and/or activity is raised in breast, colorectal, gastric, kidney and thyroid carcinomas but its role in prostate cancer (PCa), the major cancer of men in the western world, is unclear.
METHODS: PLD1 protein expression in cultured PNT2C2, PNT1A, P4E6, LNCaP, PC3, PC3M, VCaP, 22RV1 cell lines and patient-derived PCa cells was analysed by western blotting. PLD1 protein localisation in normal, benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), and castrate-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) tissue sections and in a PCa tissue microarray (TMA) was examined by immunohistochemistry. PLD activity in PCa tissue was assayed using an Amplex Red method. The effect of PLD inhibitors on PCa cell viability was measured using MTS and colony forming assays.
RESULTS: PLD1 protein expression was low in the luminal prostate cell lines (LNCaP, VCaP, 22RV1) compared with basal lines (PC3 and PC3M). PLD1 protein expression was elevated in BPH biopsy tissue relative to normal and PCa samples. In normal and BPH tissue, PLD1 was predominantly detected in basal cells as well in some stromal cells, rather than in luminal cells. In PCa tissue, luminal cells expressed PLD1. In a PCa TMA, the mean peroxidase intensity per DAB-stained Gleason 6 and 7 tissue section was significantly higher than in sections graded Gleason 9. In CRPC tissue, PLD1 was expressed prominently in the stromal compartment, in luminal cells in occasional glands and in an expanding population of cells that co-expressed chromogranin A and neurone-specific enolase. Levels of PLD activity in normal and PCa tissue samples were similar. A specific PLD1 inhibitor markedly reduced the survival of both prostate cell lines and patient-derived PCa cells compared with two dual PLD1/PLD2 inhibitors. Short-term exposure of PCa cells to the same specific PLD1 inhibitor significantly reduced colony formation.
CONCLUSIONS: A new specific inhibitor of PLD1, which is well tolerated in mice, reduces PCa cell survival and thus has potential as a novel therapeutic agent to reduce prostate cancer progression. Increased PLD1 expression may contribute to the hyperplasia characteristic of BPH and in the progression of castrate-resistant PCa, where an expanding population of neuroendocrine-like cells express PLD1.British Journal of Cancer advance online publication, 14 November 2017; doi:10.1038/bjc.2017.391 www.bjcancer.com.
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