Integrins comprise a large family of cell surface receptors with critical roles in cell adhesion, and signal transduction. These properties are exploited in cancer, affecting the spectrum of growth, proliferation. Invasion and metastatic potential of human tumor cells. Because of these broad signaling functions, and easy accessibility at the cell surface, integrins are attractive therapeutic targets in cancer, but their molecular requirements in tumorigenesis are not completely understood. Recent studies have uncovered a novel pathway of integrin signaling critically exploited for prostate cancer progression. We found that integrin avB6 is prominently expressed in prostate cancer, but not in normal prostate, in vivo. In turn. avp6 orchestrates a broad signaling pathway in the prostatic epithelium, triggering androgen receptor (AR) activation, upregulating the expression of survivin, a master switch of cell proliferation and cell survival in cancer, and promoting osteolytic lesions in the bone microenvironment. This pathway results in increased tumor cell invasion, and enhanced metastatic dissemination, in vivo. Therefore, the hypothesis that avp6 orchestrates a novel signaling network of prostate cancer progression can be formulated, and will constitute the focus of the present application. In the first specific aim, experiments will be carried out to elucidate the mechanistic requirements and functional implications of avp6 upregulation of survivin in prostate cancer, with respect to transcriptional/post-transcriptlonal responses, modulation of mitochondrial apoptosis, and control of cell cycle checkpoints in response to ionizing irradiation. The second specific aim will investigate whether the signaling circuits mediated by avp6 and other integrins regulate an AR-Runx2 transcriptional complex in bone remodeling during metastatic prostate cancer growth. In the third specific aim, we will target the avp6 pathway with a novel function-blocking monoclonal antibody 6.SG9 in preclinical molecular and genetic models of localized and metastatic prostate cancer, in vivo. The overall application combines mechanistic evaluation of integrin-modulation of tumor progression with state-of the-art studies of developmental therapeutics in advanced prostate cancer. The results will open concrete opportunities for novel molecular molecular therapy of patients with advanced prostate cancer.

Public Health Relevance

We have uncovered a novel pathway of prostate cancer progression centered on the signaling properties of avB6 integrin. Therapeutic targeting of this pathway using molecular and genetic disease models that approximate the human disease, combined with mechanistic dissection of its molecular requirements, may open concrete new prospects for the rational treatment of patients with advanced and metastatic prostate cancer.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Research Program Projects (P01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZCA1-RPRB-0)
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Wistar Institute
United States
Zip Code
Caino, M Cecilia; Altieri, Dario C (2016) Molecular Pathways: Mitochondrial Reprogramming in Tumor Progression and Therapy. Clin Cancer Res 22:540-5
Lisanti, Sofia; Garlick, David S; Bryant, Kelly G et al. (2016) Transgenic Expression of the Mitochondrial Chaperone TNFR-associated Protein 1 (TRAP1) Accelerates Prostate Cancer Development. J Biol Chem 291:25247-25254
Lu, Huimin; Wang, Tao; Li, Jing et al. (2016) αvβ6 Integrin Promotes Castrate-Resistant Prostate Cancer through JNK1-Mediated Activation of Androgen Receptor. Cancer Res 76:5163-74
Languino, Lucia R; Singh, Amrita; Prisco, Marco et al. (2016) Exosome-mediated transfer from the tumor microenvironment increases TGFβ signaling in squamous cell carcinoma. Am J Transl Res 8:2432-7
Chae, Young Chan; Vaira, Valentina; Caino, M Cecilia et al. (2016) Mitochondrial Akt Regulation of Hypoxic Tumor Reprogramming. Cancer Cell 30:257-72
Singh, Amrita; Fedele, Carmine; Lu, Huimin et al. (2016) Exosome-mediated Transfer of αvβ3 Integrin from Tumorigenic to Nontumorigenic Cells Promotes a Migratory Phenotype. Mol Cancer Res 14:1136-1146
Farina, Nicholas H; Zingiryan, Areg; Akech, Jacqueline A et al. (2016) A microRNA/Runx1/Runx2 network regulates prostate tumor progression from onset to adenocarcinoma in TRAMP mice. Oncotarget :
Chae, Young Chan; Angelin, Alessia; Lisanti, Sofia et al. (2015) Corrigendum: Landscape of the mitochondrial Hsp90 metabolome in tumours. Nat Commun 6:7605
Zhang, Xuhui; Akech, Jacqueline; Browne, Gillian et al. (2015) Runx2-Smad signaling impacts the progression of tumor-induced bone disease. Int J Cancer 136:1321-32
Forno, Irene; Ferrero, Stefano; Russo, Maria Veronica et al. (2015) Deregulation of MiR-34b/Sox2 Predicts Prostate Cancer Progression. PLoS One 10:e0130060

Showing the most recent 10 out of 56 publications