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KGF suppresses α2β1 integrin function and promotes differentiation of the transient amplifying population in human prostatic epithelium

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Rakesh Heer, Dr Anne Collins, Professor Craig Robson, Dr Brian Shenton, Professor Hing Leung


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Prostate epithelial stem cells are self-renewing cells capable of differentiation into prostate epithelium, and are thought to contribute towards both benign and malignant conditions in the human prostate. We have previously demonstrated that prostate epithelial basal cells express high levels of integrin α2β1 and this population can be subdivided into stem (α2β1hi CD133+) and transient-amplifying population (TAP) cells (α2βhi CD133-). However, the molecular mechanism(s) controlling the commitment and regulation of these cells towards differentiated epithelium remains unclear. Here, we demonstrate that β1 integrin function is required for the maintenance of basal prostatic epithelial cells and suppression of its function by either methylcellulose or, more specifically, β1-blocking antibody (80 μg/ ml) induces differentiation, with associated expression of the differentiation-specific markers prostate acid phosphatase (PAP) and cytokeratin 18 (CK18). Keratinocyte growth factor (KGF), a stromal-derived growth factor, has previously been implicated in prostate organogenesis using in vitro tissue recombination experiments. We show that treatment with KGF (10 ng/ml) potently induces epithelial differentiation with concomitant suppression of α2β1 integrin expression as well as the induction of androgen receptor expression. Specifically, p38-MAPK appears to be involved and the presence of SB202190, a p38 inhibitor, significantly blocks KGF-induced differentiation. Furthermore, the expression of the high-affinity receptor tyrosine kinase to KGF (FGFR2) is predominantly detectable in α2β1hi CD133- TAP cells when compared with stem cells (α2β1hi CD133+), which would therefore be relatively unresponsive to the differentiating effect of KGE Taken together, using a human primary culture model, we have demonstrated key roles for interactions between KGF and integrin-mediated function in the regulation of prostate epithelial differentiation.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Heer, R., Collins, A., Robson, C.N., Shenton, B.K., Leung, H.K.

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Cell Science

Year: 2006

Volume: 119

Issue: 7

Pages: 1416-1424

Print publication date: 01/04/2006

ISSN (print): 0021-9533

ISSN (electronic): 1477-9137


DOI: 10.1242/jcs.02802

PubMed id: 16554439


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Funder referenceFunder name
G0100100Medical Research Council