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Keywords:

  • PARATHYROID HORMONE-RELATED PEPTIDE;
  • PTHrP;
  • GIANT CELL TUMOR OF BONE;
  • GCT;
  • ANTI-PTHrP NEUTRALIZING ANTIBODY;
  • APOPTOSIS;
  • CELL CYCLE

Abstract

Giant cell tumor of bone (GCT) is an aggressive skeletal tumor characterized by local bone destruction, high recurrence rates, and metastatic potential. Previous works in our laboratory, including functional assays, have shown that neutralization of parathyroid hormone-related protein (PTHrP) in the cell environment inhibits cell proliferation and induces cell death in GCT stromal cells, indicating a role for PTHrP in cell propagation and survival. The objective of this study was to investigate the global gene and protein expression patterns of GCT cells in order to identify the underlying pathways and mechanisms of neoplastic proliferation provided by PTHrP in the bone microenvironment. Primary stromal cell cultures from 10 patients with GCT were used in this study. Cells were exposed to optimized concentrations of either PTHrP peptide or anti-PTHrP neutralizing antiserum and were analyzed with both cDNA microarray and proteomic microarray assays in triplicate. Hierarchical clustering and principal component analyses confirmed that counteraction of PTHrP in GCT stromal cells results in a clear-cut gene expression pattern distinct from all other treatment groups and the control cell line human fetal osteoblast (hFOB). Multiple bioinformatics tools were used to analyze changes in gene/protein expression and identify important gene ontologies and pathways common to this anti-PTHrP–induced regulatory gene network. PTHrP neutralization interferes with multiple cell survival and apoptosis signaling pathways by triggering both death receptors and cell cycle–mediated apoptosis, particularly via the caspase pathway, TRAIL pathway, JAK-STAT signaling pathway, and cyclin E/CDK2-associated G1/S cell cycle progression. These findings indicate that PTHrP neutralization exhibits anticancer potential by regulating cell-cycle progression and apoptosis in bone tumor cells, with the corollary being that PTHrP is a pro-neoplastic factor that can be targeted in the treatment of bone tumors. © 2012 American Society for Bone and Mineral Research.