Inhibition of prostate cancer neovascularization and growth by urokinase-plasminogen activator receptor blockade

Christopher P Evans, Fred Elfman, Sareh Parangi, Marion Conn, Gerald Cunha, Marc A. Shuman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


Binding of the serine protease urokinase (u-PA) to its receptor on tumor cell surfaces facilitates proteolysis and tumor invasion. We undertook this study to determine whether the role of u-PA in prostate cancer induced angiogenesis and secondary tumor growth by developing a homologous, immunocompetent in vivo model in which the tumors cells secrete an inhibitor of the murine u-PA receptor. A mutant recombinant murine u-PA that retains receptor binding but not proteolytic activity was made by PCR mutagenesis. Mutant u-PA and a reporter gene pRK luciferase were transfected and stably expressed in the highly metastatic rat Dunning MAT-LyLu prostate cancer cell line. Several clones expressing mutant u-PA and luciferase were identified by Western blotting, plasminogen zymography, and reverse transcription-PCR. One of these clones, 5C4, was injected s.c. into Copenhagen rats. Compared to animals injected with clones expressing pRK luciferase alone, tumors in animals injected with 5C4 cells were significantly smaller. Moreover, there were fewer lung micrometastases in the 5C4 animals. Primary tumor angiogenesis was measured by microvessel quantification of tissue stained with antibodies against von Willebrand factor. Mean microvessel density in 5C4 tumors was 4.3-fold lower than that in animals with tumors derived from the control tumor cell line (P < 0.0001). Significant inhibition of tumor growth was also observed for two additional MAT-LyLu cell lines expressing mutant u-PA. These findings suggest that cell surface u-PA contributes to prostate cancer growth by enhancing angiogenesis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3594-3599
Number of pages6
JournalCancer Research
Issue number16
StatePublished - Aug 15 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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