Antagonist of growth hormone-releasing hormone induces apoptosis in LNCaP human prostate cancer cells through a Ca2+-dependent pathway

Published on Tuesday, 04 July 2017


Antagonists of growth hormone-releasing hormone (GHRH) exert antiproliferative effects directly on cancer cells, which are mediated by the tumoral GHRH receptors. However, the signal transduction pathways involved in antiproliferative effect of GHRH antagonists have not yet been elucidated.

We used flow cytometry to investigate whether GHRH antagonist JV-1-38 can induce changes in the cytosolic free Ca2+ concentration leading to apoptosis in LNCaP human prostate cancer cells. JV-1-38 evoked prompt Ca2+ signal in a dose-dependent way (1-10 microM) and induced early stage of apoptosis in LNCaP human prostate cancer cells at a concentration effective in suppression of cell proliferation (10 microM) peaking after 3 h.

Unexpectedly, agonist GHRH(1-29)NH2, which elevates cytosolic free Ca2+ concentration in pituitary somatotrophs at nanomolar concentrations, failed to induce Ca2+ signal or apoptosis even at a 10-fold higher concentration (100 microM). However, agonist GHRH(1-29)NH2 inhibited JV-1-38-induced Ca2+ signals in a dose-dependent way without affecting the antagonist-induced apoptosis.

Peptides unrelated to GHRH did not induce Ca2+ signals in LNCaP human prostate cancer cells. EDTA (10 mM) or nifedipine (10 microM) significantly reduced the Ca2+ signal and early stage of apoptosis induced by JV-1-38, supporting the view that the increase in intracellular Ca2+ in response to JV-1-38 occurs primarily through extracellular Ca2+ entry through voltage-operated Ca2+ channels.

In conclusion, GHRH antagonists activate tumoral GHRH receptors and are able to induce apoptosis in LNCaP human prostate cancer cells through a Ca2+-dependent pathway.

Treatment with GHRH antagonists may offer a new approach to the therapy of prostate and other hormone-sensitive cancers.



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See also:

- Somatostatin in oncology, the overlooked evidences in the "Some additional publications about hGH/GH-GHRH/GHRF/GRF" section;

- The Di Bella Method (DBM) in the treatment of prostate cancer: a preliminary retrospective study of 16 patients and a review of the literature;

- Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma: clinical records on 17 patients treated with Di Bella's Method;

- The Di Bella Method Increases by the 30% the survival rate for Pancreas tumors and for this reason should be proposed as first line therapy for this type of cancer;

- Evaluation of the safety and efficacy of the first-line treatment with somatostatin combined with melatonisn, retinoids, vitamin D3, and low doses of cyclophosphamide in 20 cases of breast cancer: a preliminary report;

- The Di Bella Method (DBM) improved survival, objective response and performance status in a retrospective observational clinical study on 122 cases of breast cancer;

- Complete objective response to biological therapy of plurifocal breast carcinoma.