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'Longevity' protein SIRT1 may ward off precursor to prostate cancer
Date:1/13/2011

r understand SIRT1's role in the development of androgen-responsive tissues, such as the prostate, researchers from Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, worked with the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center at Columbia University in New York and the Ottawa Health Research Institute at the University of Ottawa. Dr. Pestell's laboratory carried out a genome-wide microarray, pathway analysis and histology on Sirt1 positive and negative transgenic mice and littermate controls.

The team found that deletion of the Sirt1 gene in mice resulted in PIN formation; features included cellular hyperplasia, increased Ki67 staining, hyperchromatic nuclei and prominent nucleoli, as well as a reduced size in prostate. Gene expression analysis further demonstrated that loss of endogenous Sirt1 inhibited autophagy, which regulates normal gland development.

Dr. Pestell's laboratory was the first to show that the androgen receptor is regulated by the deacetylase enzyme (SIRT1) in cell lines in a tissue culture. "So then we asked the question, 'if you take prostate cancer cell lines, and if the androgen receptor promotes growth, and acetylation promotes growth, does the deacetylase inhibit growth?'" After establishing that it in fact did, researchers applied their mouse model to establish the same relationship on the animal level.

Since the results of the study suggest that drugs that activate Sirt1 could block prostate cancer, Dr. Pestell explains, his team is now working to test various prevention drugs they've screened for testing in human prostate cancer cells.


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Contact: Steve Graff
215-955-5291
Thomas Jefferson University
Source:Eurekalert

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