Leydig cell tumors are the most frequent interstitial neoplasms of the testis with increased incidence in recent years. They are hormonally active and are considered one of the steroid-secreting tumors. Although usually benign, the malignant phenotype responds poorly to conventional chemotherapy or radiation, highlighting the need to identify new therapeutic targets for treatment. Here, we identified a novel glucocorticoid-mediated mechanism that controls cell growth in Leydig cell tumors. We found that a synthetic glucocorticoid receptor agonist, dexamethasone, reduces cell proliferation in rat Leydig tumor cells by decreasing the expression and the enzymatic activity of the estrogen-producing enzyme aromatase. This inhibitory effect relies on the ability of activated glucocorticoid receptor to regulate the aromatase gene transcriptional activity through the recruitment of nuclear receptor corepressor protein and silencing mediator of retinoid and thyroid hormone receptors to a newly identified putative glucocorticoid responsive element within the aromatase promoter II. Our in vivo studies reveal a reduction of tumor growth, after dexamethasone treatment, in animal xenografts. Tumors from dexamethasone-treated mice exhibit a decrease in the expression of the proliferation marker Ki-67 and the aromatase enzyme. Our data demonstrate that activated glucocorticoid receptor, decreasing aromatase expression, induces Leydig tumor regression both in vitro and in vivo, suggesting that glucocorticoid receptor might be a potential target for the therapy of Leydig cell tumors.

Glucocorticoid Receptor as a Potential Target to Decrease Aromatase Expression and Inhibit Leydig Tumor Growth

MALIVINDI, ROCCO;Rago V;GIORDANO, Cinzia;Barone I;BONOFIGLIO, Daniela;Gelsomino L;GIORDANO, Francesca;ANDO', Sebastiano;
2016

Abstract

Leydig cell tumors are the most frequent interstitial neoplasms of the testis with increased incidence in recent years. They are hormonally active and are considered one of the steroid-secreting tumors. Although usually benign, the malignant phenotype responds poorly to conventional chemotherapy or radiation, highlighting the need to identify new therapeutic targets for treatment. Here, we identified a novel glucocorticoid-mediated mechanism that controls cell growth in Leydig cell tumors. We found that a synthetic glucocorticoid receptor agonist, dexamethasone, reduces cell proliferation in rat Leydig tumor cells by decreasing the expression and the enzymatic activity of the estrogen-producing enzyme aromatase. This inhibitory effect relies on the ability of activated glucocorticoid receptor to regulate the aromatase gene transcriptional activity through the recruitment of nuclear receptor corepressor protein and silencing mediator of retinoid and thyroid hormone receptors to a newly identified putative glucocorticoid responsive element within the aromatase promoter II. Our in vivo studies reveal a reduction of tumor growth, after dexamethasone treatment, in animal xenografts. Tumors from dexamethasone-treated mice exhibit a decrease in the expression of the proliferation marker Ki-67 and the aromatase enzyme. Our data demonstrate that activated glucocorticoid receptor, decreasing aromatase expression, induces Leydig tumor regression both in vitro and in vivo, suggesting that glucocorticoid receptor might be a potential target for the therapy of Leydig cell tumors.
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11770/139395
 Attenzione

Attenzione! I dati visualizzati non sono stati sottoposti a validazione da parte dell'ateneo

Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? 8
  • Scopus 15
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 15
social impact