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Center for Cancer Research and Therapeutic Development


TGF-β inhibits proliferation of prostate epithelial cells. However, prostate cancer cells in advanced stages become resistant to inhibitory effects of TGF-β. The intracellular signaling mechanisms involved in differential effects of TGF-β during different stages are largely unknown. Using cell line models, we have shown that TGF-β inhibits proliferation in normal (RWPE-1) and prostate cancer (DU145) cells but does not have any effect on proliferation of prostate cancer (PC3) cells. We have investigated the role of Jun family proteins (c-Jun, JunB, and JunD) in TGF-β effects on cell proliferation. Jun family members were expressed at different levels and responded differentially to TGF-β treatment. TGF-β effects on JunD protein levels, but not mRNA levels, correlated with its effects on cell proliferation. TGF-β induced significant reduction in JunD protein in RWPE-1 and DU145 cells but not in PC3 cells. Selective knockdown of JunD expression using siRNA in DU145 and PC3 cells resulted in significant reduction in cell proliferation, and forced overexpression of JunD increased the proliferation rate. On the other hand, knockdown of c-Jun or JunB had little, if any, effect on cell proliferation; overexpression of c-Jun and JunB decreased the proliferation rate in DU145 cells. Further studies showed that down-regulation of JunD in response to TGF-β treatment is mediated via the proteasomal degradation pathway. In conclusion, we show that specific Jun family members exert differential effects on proliferation in prostate cancer cells in response to TGF-β, and inhibition of cell proliferation by TGF-β requires degradation of JunD protein.




Journal of Biological Chemistry, 291(34)

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