HYAL1 hyaluronidase in prostate cancer: A tumor promoter and suppressor

Vinata B. Lokeshwar, Wolfgang H. Cerwinka, Tadahiro Isoyama, Bal L. Lokeshwar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

146 Scopus citations


Hyaluronidases degrade hyaluronic acid, which promotes metastasis. HYAL1 type hyaluronidase is an independent prognostic indicator of prostate cancer progression and a biomarker for bladder cancer. However, it is controversial whether hyaluronidase (e.g., HYAL1) functions as a tumor promoter or as a suppressor. We stably transfected prostate cancer cells, DU145 and PC-3 ML, with HYAL1-sense (HYAL1-S), HYAL1-antisense (HYAL1-AS), or vector DNA. HYAL1-AS transfectants were not generated for PC-3 ML because it expresses little HYAL1. HYAL1-S transfectants produced ≤42 milliunits (moderate overproducers) or ≥80 milliunits hyaluronidase activity (high producers). HYAL1-AS transfectants produced <10% hyaluronidase activity when compared with vector transfectants (18-24 milliunits). Both blocking HYAL1 expression and high HYAL1 production resulted in a 4- to 5-fold decrease in prostate cancer cell proliferation. HYAL1-AS transfectants had a G2-M block due to decreased cyclin B1, cdc25c, and cdc2/p34 expression and cdc2/p34 kinase activity. High HYAL1 producers had a 3-fold increase in apoptotic activity and mitochondrial depolarization when compared with vector transfectants and expressed activated proapoptotic protein WOX1. Blocking HYAL1 expression inhibited tumor growth by 4- to 7-fold, whereas high HYAL1 producing transfectants either did not form tumors (DU145) or grew 3.5-fold slower (PC-3 ML). Whereas vector and moderate HYAL1 producers generated muscle and blood vessel infiltrating tumors, HYAL1-AS tumors were benign and contained smaller capillaries. Specimens of high HYAL1 producers were 99% free of tumor cells. This study shows that, depending on the concentration, HYAL1 functions as a tumor promoter and as a suppressor and provides a basis for anti-hyaluronidase and high-hyaluronidase treatments for cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7782-7789
Number of pages8
JournalCancer Research
Issue number17
StatePublished - Sep 1 2005
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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