Secreted Hsp90 is a novel regulator of the epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) in prostate cancer.
Prostate cancer (PCa) is the most frequently diagnosed malignancy in men, and the second highest contributor of male cancer related lethality. Disease mortality is due primarily to metastatic spread, highlighting the urgent need to identify factors involved in this progression. Activation of the genetic epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) program is implicated as a major contributor of PCa progression. Initiation of EMT confers invasive and metastatic behavior in preclinical models and is correlated with poor clinical prognosis. Extracellular Hsp90 (eHsp90) promotes cell motility and invasion in cancer cells and metastasis in preclinical models, however, the mechanistic basis for its widespread tumorigenic function remains unclear. We have identified a novel and pivotal role for eHsp90 in driving EMT events in PCa. In support of this notion, more metastatic PCa lines exhibited increased eHsp90 expression relative to their lineage-related nonmetastatic counterparts. We demonstrate that eHsp90 promoted cell motility in an ERK and matrix metalloproteinase-2/9-dependent manner, and shifted cellular morphology toward a mesenchymal phenotype. Conversely, inhibition of eHsp90 attenuated pro-motility signaling, blocked PCa migration, and shifted cell morphology toward an epithelial phenotype. Last, we report that surface eHsp90 was found in primary PCa tumor specimens, and elevated eHsp90 expression was associated with increased levels of matrix metalloproteinase-2/9 transcripts. We conclude that eHsp90 serves as a driver of EMT events, providing a mechanistic basis for its ability to promote cancer progression and metastasis in preclinical models. Furthermore, its newly identified expression in PCa specimens, and potential regulation of pro-metastatic genes, supports a putative clinical role for eHsp90 in PCa progression.
Hance, MW; Dole, K; Gopal, U; Bohonowych, JE; Jezierska-Drutel, A; Neumann, CA; Liu, H; Garraway, IP; Isaacs, JS
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