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PRL signal transduction in the epithelial compartment of rat prostate maintained as long-term organ cultures in vitro. Endocrinology 2002 Jan;143(1):228-38



Pubmed ID




Scopus ID

2-s2.0-0036142679   48 Citations


Using long-term organ cultures of rat prostate tissue explants, we previously demonstrated that PRL both stimulates proliferation and acts as an androgen-independent suppressor of apoptosis in prostate epithelial cells, leading to epithelial hyperplasia. In this work we delineate intracellular signaling molecules activated by PRL in prostate tissue to identify candidate signaling proteins that are responsible for maintaining survival and proliferation of prostate epithelium in androgen-deprived growth environment. We now show that signal transducer and activator of transcription-5a (Stat5a) and Stat5b become tyrosine phosphorylated in response to PRL stimulation in rat prostate using prostate organ culture as an experimental model. Stat5 was translocated to the nuclei of epithelial cells of prostate tissue as demonstrated by immunohistochemistry. Furthermore, EMSA showed PRL-inducible binding of Stat5a homodimers and Stat5a/5b heterodimers to the PRL response element of the beta-casein gene promoter. Signaling molecules Stat3, Stat1, MAPK, or protein kinase B, which can be activated by PRL in other target cells, were not activated by PRL in prostate tissue. Furthermore, we show that Stat5a and Stat5b are continuously phosphorylated in rat prostate in vivo, although they are expressed to varying degree in separate lobes of rat prostate. Collectively, our results suggest that PRL signaling in rat prostate tissue is primarily transduced via Stat5a and Stat5b. The Stat5 pathway represents one candidate signaling mechanism, used by PRL and possibly other growth factors and cytokines, that supports the viability of prostate epithelial cells during long-term androgen deprivation.

Author List

Ahonen TJ, Härkönen PL, Rui H, Nevalainen MT


Marja T. Nevalainen MD, PhD Assistant Dean, Professor in the Pathology department at Medical College of Wisconsin
Hallgeir Rui MD, PhD Vice Chair, Professor in the Pathology department at Medical College of Wisconsin

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

DNA-Binding Proteins
Milk Proteins
Organ Culture Techniques
Rats, Sprague-Dawley
Receptors, Androgen
STAT5 Transcription Factor
Signal Transduction
Time Factors
Tissue Distribution
jenkins-FCD Prod-398 336d56a365602aa89dcc112f077233607d6a5abc