Intrinsic, Pro-Apoptotic Effects of IGFBP-3 on Breast Cancer Cells are Reversible: Involvement of PKA, Rho, and Ceramide
Insulin-like growth factor (IGF) binding protein-3 (IGFBP-3) is known to block IGF action and inhibit cell growth. IGFBP-3 is thought to act by sequestering free IGFs or, possibly, act via a novel IGF-independent mechanism. Supporting its role as a primary growth inhibitor, IGFBP-3 production has been shown to be increased by cell growth-inhibitory agents, such as transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta), and the tumor suppressor gene p53. In this paper, we demonstrate, for the first time, a novel function of IGFBP-3 as an apoptosis-inducing agent and show that this action is mediated through an IGF.IGF receptor-independent pathway. In the p53 negative prostate cancer cell line, PC-3, the addition of recombinant IGFBP-3 resulted in a dose-dependent induction of apoptosis. 125I-IGFBP-3 bound with high affinity to specific proteins in PC-3 cell lysates and plasma membrane preparations. These membrane-associated molecules may serve as receptors that mediate the direct effect of IGFBP-3 on apoptosis. In addition, in an IGF receptor-negative mouse fibroblast cell line, treatment with recombinant IGFBP-3 as well as transfection of the IGFBP-3 gene induced apoptosis, suggesting that neither IGFs nor IGF receptors are required for this action. Furthermore, treatment with TGF-beta1, a known apoptosis-inducing agent, resulted in the induction of IGFBP-3 expression 6-12 h before the onset of apoptosis. This effect of TGF-beta1 was prevented by co-treatment with IGFBP-3-neutralizing antibodies or IGFBP-3-specific antisense thiolated oligonucleotides. These findings suggest that IGFBP-3 induces apoptosis through a novel pathway independent of either p53 or the IGF.IGF receptor-mediated cell survival pathway and that IGFBP-3 mediates TGF-beta1 induced apoptosis in PC-3 cells.