Oncogenic Role of the Ec Peptide of the IGF-1Ec Isoform in Prostate Cancer
IGF-1 is one of the key molecules in cancer biology; however, little is known about the role of the preferential expression of the premature IGF-1 isoforms in prostate cancer. We have examined the role of the cleaved COO− terminal peptide (PEc) of the third IGF-1 isoform, IGF-1Ec, in prostate cancer. Our evidence suggests that endogenously produced PEc induces cellular proliferation in the human prostate cancer cells (PC-3) in vitro and in vivo, by activating the ERK1/2 pathway in an autocrine/paracrine manner. PEc overexpressing cells and tumors presented evidence of epithelial to mesenchymal transition, whereas the orthotopic injection of PEc-overexpressing, normal prostate epithelium cells (HPrEC) in SCID mice was associated with increased metastatic rate. In humans, the IGF-1Ec expression was detected in prostate cancer biopsies, where its expression correlates with tumor stage. Our data describes the action of PEc in prostate cancer biology and defines its potential role in tumor growth, progression and metastasis.
We thank Professors Hahn, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts for the kind donation of the immortalized HPrEC cells and Kotsinas Athanasios, Consoulas Chris and Sideridou Maria and Chris Adamopoulos, from Athens Medical School, National and Kapodestrian University of Athens, for helpful discussions.
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