Regulatory Role of mir-203 in Prostate Cancer Progression and Metastasis

Sharanjot Saini, Shahana Majid, Soichiro Yamamura, Laura Tabatabai, Seong O Suh, Varahram Shahryari, Yi Chen, Guoren Deng, Yuichiro Tanaka, Rajvir Dahiya
Clinical Cancer Research 2011 August 15, 17 (16): 5287-98

PURPOSE: Advanced metastatic prostate cancer (PCa) is a fatal disease, with only palliative therapeutic options. Though almost 80% of cases of metastatic PCa present bone metastasis, our current understanding of the molecular mechanisms that govern this metastatic dissemination remains fragmentary. The main objective of the present study was to identify microRNA (miRNA) genes that regulate metastatic PCa.

EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: miRNA expression profiling was done in human prostate cell lines to identify dysregulated miRNA components of advanced PCa. miR-203 expression was assessed in prostate carcinoma cell lines and clinical specimens by real-time PCR and in situ hybridization. To assess the biological significance of miR-203, miR-203 was reexpressed in bone metastatic PCa cell lines followed by in vitro and in vivo functional assays.

RESULTS: miR-203 expression is specifically attenuated in bone metastatic PCa suggesting a fundamental antimetastatic role for this miRNA. Reintroduction of miR-203 in bone metastatic PCa cell lines suppresses metastasis via inhibition of several critical steps of the metastatic cascade including epithelial-mesenchymal transition, invasion, and motility. Ectopic miR-203 significantly attenuated the development of metastasis in a bone metastatic model of PCa. Importantly, miR-203 regulates a cohort of pro-metastatic genes including ZEB2, Bmi, survivin, and bone-specific effectors including Runx2, a master regulator of bone metastasis.

CONCLUSIONS: miR-203 is an "antimetastatic" miRNA in PCa that acts at multiple steps of the PCa metastatic cascade via repression of a cohort of prometastatic targets. miR-203 may be an attractive target for therapeutic intervention in advanced PCa.

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