Ca(2+) and calmodulin (CaM) play a critical role in proliferation and viability of a wide variety of cells, including prostate cancer cells. We examined two prostate cancer cell lines, androgen-sensitive LNCaP and androgen-independent PC-3. Proliferation of LNCaP cells was six to eight times more sensitive to the inhibitory effect of the CaM antagonist N-(6-aminohexyl)-5-chloro-1-naphthalenesulfonamide hydrochloride (W-7) than were PC-3 cells. Because LNCaP cell proliferation is sensitive to stimulation by androgen, we assessed the physical and functional interaction between androgen receptor (AR) and CaM. We observed tight binding of AR to CaM when LNCaP cell extracts were subjected to CaM-affinity column chromatography. AR binding to CaM was Ca(2+)-dependent and was inhibited by pretreatment of the cell extracts with W-7. Using immunofluorescence staining and confocal microscopy, we demonstrated colocalization of AR and CaM in the nucleus of LNCaP cells. Furthermore, the functional relevance of AR-CaM interactions in intact cells was revealed by the observation that W-7 was as effective as Casodex, an antiandrogen, in blocking AR-regulated expression of prostate-specific antigen in LNCaP cells. AR seems to interact with CaM directly because purified human AR could bind to CaM-agarose, and CaM could be detected in AR-immunoprecipitate prepared from purified soluble proteins. These studies provide direct evidence for physical and functional interaction between AR and CaM and suggest the potential usefulness of CaM antagonists in blocking AR activity in prostate cancer.
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