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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Antiproliferative effects of luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone agonists on the human prostatic cancer cell line LNCaP.

Highly potent LH-releasing hormone ( LHRH) agonists have been recently introduced in therapy for the treatment of the carcinoma of the prostate, an androgen-dependent pathology. These peptides are believed to act mainly by inhibiting the pituitary-testicular axis and, consequently, by reducing testosterone levels. The recent observation that binding sites for LHRH analogs are present on prostatic tumor tissue suggests that these drugs could also act directly on the tumor. To verify this hypothesis, the effects of two potent LHRH agonists [Zoladex ( Z) and Buserelin ( B)] have been studied on the proliferation of the human prostatic cancer cell line LNCaP (lymph node carcinoma of the prostate). LNCaP cells were treated for 9 days with different doses of either Z or B (concentrations from 10(-12)-10(-6) M). Both analogs significantly inhibited cell proliferation at doses between 10(-9)-10(-6) M. The antiproliferative action of the two LHRH agonists was shown to be dose dependent, with IC50 values of 0.82 and 1.79 nM for Z and B, respectively. A similar treatment with B was without any significant effect on the proliferation of a mouse embryo fibroblast cell line (Swiss 3T3), which was used as a nontumoral control. The inhibitory action of both LHRH agonists (10(-8) M) on LNCaP cell proliferation was completely antagonized by the simultaneous treatment of the cells with a potent LHRH antagonist (Nal-Arg- LHRH; 10(-8) M); when given alone at the dose selected, the antagonist did not affect cell growth. These results clearly suggest that the antiproliferative effect of LHRH agonists on LNCaP cells may be mediated by specific receptors. The presence of binding sites for [125I]B was consequently demonstrated on the membranes of LNCaP cells cultured in a medium containing charcoal-stripped fetal calf serum, i.e. in the absence of steroids. The affinity of these binding sites for the ligand was lower than that observed for the same receptors on rat pituitary membranes. To clarify the mechanism of the antiproliferative action of the LHRH agonists, the effects of both Z and B on the incorporation of [3H]thymidine and [14C]methionine into LNCaP cells were investigated. During a short incubation period (3 h), the two LHRH agonists rapidly inhibited [3H]thymidine incorporation into the cells. The same treatment did not affect the incorporation of [14C]methionine into proteins.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS)[1]


  1. Antiproliferative effects of luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone agonists on the human prostatic cancer cell line LNCaP. Limonta, P., Dondi, D., Moretti, R.M., Maggi, R., Motta, M. J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. (1992) [Pubmed]
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