V-ATPase Inhibition Decreases Mutant Androgen Receptor Activity in Castrate-resistant Prostate Cancer.


Whitton B(1)(2), Okamoto H(3)(4), Rose-Zerilli M(1)(2), Packham G(1)(2), Crabb SJ(5)(2).
Author information:
(1)Cancer Sciences Unit, Southampton General Hospital, Southampton, United Kingdom.
(2)Cancer Research UK Centre, University of Southampton, Southampton General Hospital, Southampton, United Kingdom.
(3)School of Biological Sciences, University of Southampton, Southampton, United Kingdom.
(4)School of Life Sciences, University of Sussex, Falmer, Brighton, United Kingdom.
(5)Cancer Sciences Unit, Southampton General Hospital, Southampton, United Kingdom. [Email]


Prostate cancer is critically dependent on androgen receptor (AR) signaling. Despite initial responsiveness to androgen deprivation, most patients with advanced prostate cancer subsequently progress to a clinically aggressive castrate-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) phenotype, typically associated with expression of splice-variant or mutant AR forms. Although current evidence suggests that the vacuolar-ATPase (V-ATPase), a multiprotein complex that catalyzes proton transport across intracellular and plasma membranes, influences wild-type AR function, the effect of V-ATPase inhibition on variant AR function is unknown.Inhibition of V-ATPase reduced AR function in wild-type and mutant AR luciferase reporter models. In hormone-sensitive prostate cancer cell lines (LNCaP, DuCaP) and mutant AR CRPC cell lines (22Rv1, LNCaP-F877L/T878A), V-ATPase inhibition using bafilomycin-A1 and concanamycin-A reduced AR expression, and expression of AR target genes, at mRNA and protein levels. Furthermore, combining chemical V-ATPase inhibition with the AR antagonist enzalutamide resulted in a greater reduction in AR downstream target expression than enzalutamide alone in LNCaP cells. To investigate the role of individual subunit isoforms, siRNA and CRISPR-Cas9 were used to target the V1C1 subunit in 22Rv1 cells. Whereas transfection with ATP6V1C1-targeted siRNA significantly reduced AR protein levels and function, CRISPR-Cas9-mediated V1C1 knockout showed no substantial change in AR expression, but a compensatory increase in protein levels of the alternate V1C2 isoform.Overall, these results indicate that V-ATPase dysregulation is directly linked to both hormone-responsive prostate cancer and CRPC via impact on AR function. In particular, V-ATPase inhibition can reduce AR signaling regardless of mutant AR expression.