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BMP-6 over-expression in prostate cancer is associated with increased Id-1 protein and a more invasive phenotype

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Steven Darby, Professor Craig Robson


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Bone morphogenetic protein-6 (BMP-6) has been strongly implicated in prostate cancer development and bone metastasis. Our previous data showed that BMP-6 mRNA was absent in patients with benign prostatic hyperplasia, but evident in primary tumours with established secondary skeletal metastases. To examine the role of BMP-6 in prostate cancer progression, we have developed a BMP-6-regulatable, doxycycline-inducible gene expression system. BMP-6 induction by doxycycline addition led to increased levels of BMP-6 RNA and protein, associated with nuclear translocation of SMADs and activation of the downstream target gene Id-1. BMP-6 protein did not enhance the proliferation rate of PC3M cells but did significantly increase the rate of migration and invasion in both PC3M and DU145 cells. Increased metalloproteinase (MMP-1 and MMP-9) mRNA levels were also observed following BMP-6 induction. Luciferase reporter assays confirmed BMP-6-mediated activation of MMP-1 and MMP-9 promoters, indicating direct transcriptional activation of MMPs by BMP-6. BMP-6 stimulation also led to an increase in phosphorylation levels of MAPK proteins. We next examined the effects of BMP-6 on the downstream gene Id-1 in a cohort of prostate cancer patients. A tissue microarray (TMA) was constructed and samples stained for BMP-6 and Id-1 expression. We observed a significant increase in the intensity of staining of epithelial BMP-6 in the cancer cases compared to the benign cases (Mann-Whitney U test, p < 0.0005) and in the intensity of staining of epithelial Id-1 in the cancer cases compared to the benign cases (Mann-Whitney U test, p = 0.015). We further observed a significant positive correlation between epithelial staining for Id-1 and BMP-6 (p = 0.001) across all samples for both benign and cancer cases. These data demonstrate that BMP-6 promotes migration and invasion of prostate cancer cells, potentially through activation of Id-1 and MMP activation. Copyright © 2007 Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Darby S, Cross SS, Brown NJ, Hamdy F, Robson CN

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Pathology

Year: 2008

Volume: 214

Issue: 3

Pages: 394-404

ISSN (print): 0022-3417

ISSN (electronic): 1096-9896

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


DOI: 10.1002/path.2292

PubMed id: 18072288


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Funder referenceFunder name
G0500966Medical Research Council