Uveal melanoma (UM) is the most common malignant tumor of the eye. Recently, we have established that 46% of UM specimens express LHRH receptors. This finding supports the idea of a LHRH receptor-targeted therapy of UM patients. Cytotoxic analog of LHRH, AEZS-108 exhibits effective anti-cancer activity in LHRH-receptor positive cancers. AEZS-108 is a hybrid molecule, composed of a synthetic peptide carrier and the cytotoxic doxorubicin (DOX). In the present study, we investigated AEZS-108 induced cytotoxicity and the altered mRNA expression profile of regulatory factors related to angiogenesis and metastasis in LHRH receptor positive OCM3 cells. Our results show that AEZS-108 upregulates the expression of MASPIN/SERPINB5 tumor suppressor gene, which is downregulated in normal uvea and UM specimens independently from the LHRH receptor-ligand interaction. AEZS-108 also substantially downregulates hypoxia-inducible factor 1 alpha (HIF1A) expression. In order to investigate the mechanism of the induction of MASPIN by AEZS-108, OCM3 cells were treated with free DOX, D-Lys6 LHRH analog, or AEZS-108. qRT-PCR analysis revealed in OCM3 cells that AEZS-108 is a more potent inducer of MASPIN than free DOX. In conclusion, we show for the first time that AEZS-108 has a major impact in the regulation of angiogenesis thus plays a potential role in tumor suppression. Taken together, our results support the development of novel therapeutic strategies for UM focusing on LHRH receptors.
- AEZS-108 (AN-152/Zoptarelin doxorubicin acetate)
- Luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) receptor
- Uveal melanoma
ASJC Scopus subject areas