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Oncogene. 2017 Nov 16;36(46):6359-6373. doi: 10.1038/onc.2017.233. Epub 2017 Jul 24.

The androgen receptor is a negative regulator of eIF4E phosphorylation at S209: implications for the use of mTOR inhibitors in advanced prostate cancer.

Author information

1
VA Northern California Health Care System, University of California at Davis, Sacramento, CA, USA.
2
Department of Urology, University of California Davis School of Medicine, University of California at Davis, Sacramento, CA, USA.
3
California Northstate University College of Pharmacy, Elk Grove, CA, USA.
4
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, University of California at Davis, Sacramento, CA, USA.
5
Department of Medical Microbiology and Immunology, University of California at Davis, Sacramento, CA, USA.
6
Department of Public Health, Division of Biostatistics, University of California at Davis, Sacramento, CA, USA.

Abstract

The antiandrogen bicalutamide is widely used in the treatment of advanced prostate cancer (PCa) in many countries, but its effect on castration-resistant PCa (CRPC) is limited. We previously showed that resistance to bicalutamide results from activation of mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR). Interestingly, clinical trials testing combinations of the mTOR inhibitor RAD001 with bicalutamide were effective in bicalutamide-naïve CRPC patients, but not in bicalutamide-pretreated ones. Here we investigate causes for their difference in response. Evaluation of CRPC cell lines identified resistant vs sensitive in vitro models, and revealed that increased eIF4E(S209) phosphorylation is associated with resistance to the combination. We confirmed using a human-derived tumor xenograft mouse model that bicalutamide pre-treatment is associated with an increase in eIF4E(S209) phosphorylation. Thus, AR suppressed eukaryotic initiation factor 4E (eIF4E) phosphorylation, while the use of antiandrogens relieved this suppression, thereby triggering its increase. Additional investigation in human prostatectomy samples showed that increased eIF4E phosphorylation strongly correlated with the cell proliferation marker Ki67. Small interfering RNA-mediated knockdown (k/d) of eIF4E-sensitized CRPC cells to RAD001+bicalutamide, whereas eIF4E overexpression induced resistance. Inhibition of eIF4E phosphorylation by treatment with CGP57380 (an inhibitor of mitogen-activated protein kinase-interacting serine-threonine kinases MAP kinase-interacting kinase 1 (Mnk1/2), the eIF4E upstream kinase) or inhibitors of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2), the upstream kinase-regulating Mnk1/2, also sensitized CRPC cells to RAD001+bicalutamide. Examination of downstream targets of eIF4E-mediated translation, including survivin, demonstrated that eIF4E(S209) phosphorylation increased cap-independent translation, whereas its inhibition restored cap-dependent translation, which could be inhibited by mTOR inhibitors. Thus, our results demonstrate that while combinations of AR and mTOR inhibitors were effective in suppressing tumor growth by inhibiting both AR-induced transcription and mTOR-induced cap-dependent translation, pre-treatment with AR antagonists including bicalutamide increased eIF4E phosphorylation that induced resistance to combinations of AR and mTOR inhibitors by inducing cap-independent translation. We conclude that this resistance can be overcome by inhibiting eIF4E phosphorylation with Mnk1/2 or ERK1/2 inhibitors.

PMID:
28745319
PMCID:
PMC5690844
DOI:
10.1038/onc.2017.233
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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