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Int J Cancer. 2005 May 1;114(5):702-12.

Farnesyltransferase inhibitor SCH-66336 downregulates secretion of matrix proteinases and inhibits carcinoma cell migration.

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  • 1Laboratoire de médecine moléculaire, Hôpital Sainte-Justine, Université du Québec à Montréal, Montréal, Québec, Canada.


The ras oncogenes are among those most frequently found in human cancers. Blocking Ras farnesylation is a promising strategy for arresting cancer growth. Ras activates several signaling pathways with key roles in cellular proliferation, invasion, metastasis and angiogenesis. Furthermore, proteolytic activities of matrix proteinases such as urokinase-type plasminogen activator (uPA) and matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are regulated by Ras isoforms. Thus, we investigated the effects of SCH-66336, a farnesyltransferase inhibitor, on secretion of components of the plasminogen activation system as well as on the gelatinases MMP-2 and MMP-9, which play pivotal roles in matrix remodeling. SCH-66336 up to 5 microM did not significantly alter the viability of prostate (PC-3) and renal (Caki-1) cancer cells incubated in serum-depleted medium. SCH-66336 partly inhibited the processing of H-Ras, while levels of mature N-Ras and K-Ras remained unaffected. Under these noncytotoxic conditions, uPA and tPA levels were lowered in culture medium but raised in cell lysates, suggesting inhibition of trafficking pathways. In contrast, SCH-66336 had no effect on uPAR expression or on secreted PAI-1 levels. As expected, the reduction of uPA and tPA activities by SCH-66336 inhibited the conversion of plasminogen to plasmin by about 25% in PC-3 cells. SCH-66336 also inhibited the levels of secreted pro-MMP-2 and pro-MMP-9 as well as the release of their inhibitors TIMP-1 and TIMP-2. SCH-66336 decreased both the adhesion and even more so the migration of PC-3 cells on gelatin. Thus, SCH-66336 inhibited farnesylation in both cancer cell types, and H-Ras functions should be reduced by the drug. In addition, the lower levels of secreted proteinases in the presence of SCH-66336 suggest that reduced matrix remodeling and cell migration should occur in treated tumors.

2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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