Neuroendocrine (NE) cells promote the progression of prostate cancer to a castration-resistant state through the production of paracrine growth factors. We have demonstrated this principle using in vitro and in vivo proliferative endpoints; however, the contributions of NE-derived pro-survival factors and anti-apoptosis to this phenomenon have not been thoroughly investigated.
Here, we utilized conditioned-medium (CM) from LNCaP cells, engineered to undergo NE differentiation, and examined its effects on PC3 and LNCaP cell survival.
Statistically significant changes in clonogenic survival, Annexin V staining, PARP cleavage and trypan blue positivity of approximately twofold were observed in the presence of NE-derived CM relative to control-CM for both LNCaP and PC3 cells. These changes were partially abrogated by antagonists of the neuropeptides neurotensin, bombesin, and PTHrP. Selective inhibitors of IGF-1R, EGFR or Src caused significant and nearly complete blockade of prostate cancer cell survival due to NE secretions. Similar increases in cell survival were observed for LNCaP or PC3 cells treated with NE-derived medium in the presence of docetaxel. Increased phosphorylation of IGF-1R, following treatment with NE-derived medium, was accompanied by decreased protein tyrosine phosphatase, receptor type F (PTPRF) mRNA, and protein levels. Overexpression of PTPRF decreased cell survival, the amplitude and duration of IGF-1R phosphorylation, and enhanced PARP cleavage in the presence of NE-derived medium.
These data support the hypothesis that NE-derived factors act upon prostate cancer cells to stimulate pro-survival signaling and describe a novel mechanism of cross-talk between NE-derived factors and IGF-1R, mediated in part by PTPRF. Prostate 73: 801–812, 2013. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.