Project description:Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) is a commonly used agent for induction of neuroinflammation in preclinical studies. Upon injection, LPS causes activation of microglia and astrocytes, whose metabolism alters to favor glycolysis. Assessing in vivo neuroinflammation and its modulation following therapy remains challenging, and new noninvasive methods allowing for longitudinal monitoring would be highly valuable. Hyperpolarized (HP) 13 C magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) is a promising technique for assessing in vivo metabolism. In addition to applications in oncology, the most commonly used probe of [1-13 C] pyruvate has shown potential in assessing neuroinflammation-linked metabolism in mouse models of multiple sclerosis and traumatic brain injury. Here, we aimed to investigate LPS-induced neuroinflammatory changes using HP [1-13 C] pyruvate and HP 13 C urea. 2D chemical shift imaging following simultaneous intravenous injection of HP [1-13 C] pyruvate and HP 13 C urea was performed at baseline (day 0) and at days 3 and 7 post-intracranial injection of LPS (n = 6) or saline (n = 5). Immunofluorescence (IF) analyses were performed for Iba1 (resting and activated microglia/macrophages), GFAP (resting and reactive astrocytes) and CD68 (activated microglia/macrophages). A significant increase in HP [1-13 C] lactate production was observed at days 3 and 7 following injection, in the injected (ipsilateral) side of the LPS-treated mouse brain, but not in either the contralateral side or saline-injected animals. HP 13 C lactate/pyruvate ratio, without and with normalization to urea, was also significantly increased in the ipsilateral LPS-injected brain at 7 days compared with baseline. IF analyses showed a significant increase in CD68 and GFAP staining at 3 days, followed by increased numbers of Iba1 and GFAP positive cells at 7 days post-LPS injection. In conclusion, we can detect LPS-induced changes in the mouse brain using HP 13 C MRS, in alignment with increased numbers of microglia/macrophages and astrocytes. This study demonstrates that HP 13 C spectroscopy has substantial potential for providing noninvasive information on neuroinflammation.
Project description:The treatment of prostate cancer has been impeded by the lack of both clinically relevant disease models and metabolic markers that track tumor progression. Hyperpolarized (HP) (13) C MR spectroscopy has emerged as a new technology to investigate the metabolic shifts in prostate cancer. In this study, we investigate the glucose reprogramming using HP (13) C pyruvate MR in a patient-derived prostate tissue slice culture (TSC) model.The steady-state metabolite concentrations in freshly excised human prostate TSCs were assessed and compared to those from snap-frozen biopsy samples. The TSCs were then applied to a perfused cell (bioreactor) platform, and the bioenergetics and the dynamic pyruvate flux of the TSCs were investigated by (31) P and HP (13) C MR, respectively.The prostate TSCs demonstrated steady-state glycolytic and phospholipid metabolism, and bioenergetics that recapitulate features of prostate cancer in vivo. (13) C spectra following injection of HP (13) C pyruvate showed significantly increased pyruvate to lactate flux in malignant as compared to the benign prostate TSCs. This increased flux in the malignant prostate TSCs correlated with both increased expression of monocarboxylate transporters (MCT) and activity of lactate dehydrogenase (LDH).We provide the first mechanistic evidence for HP (13) C lactate as a prostate cancer biomarker in living human tissues, critical for the interpretation of in vivo studies. More broadly, the clinically relevant metabolic model system in combination with HP MR can facilitate the identification of clinically translatable biomarkers of prostate cancer presence, aggressiveness, and treatment response.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Hyperpolarized (HP) 13C-pyruvate MRI is a stable-isotope molecular imaging modality that provides real-time assessment of the rate of metabolism through glycolytic pathways in human prostate cancer. Heretofore this imaging modality has been successfully utilized in prostate cancer only in localized disease. This pilot clinical study investigated the feasibility and imaging performance of HP 13C-pyruvate MR metabolic imaging in prostate cancer patients with metastases to the bone and/or viscera. METHODS:Six patients who had metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer were recruited. Carbon-13 MR examination were conducted on a clinical 3T MRI following injection of 250?mM hyperpolarized 13C-pyruvate, where pyruvate-to-lactate conversion rate (kPL) was calculated. Paired metastatic tumor biopsy was performed with histopathological and RNA-seq analyses. RESULTS:We observed a high rate of glycolytic metabolism in prostate cancer metastases, with a mean kPL value of 0.020?±?0.006?(s-1) and 0.026?±?0.000?(s-1) in bone (N?=?4) and liver (N?=?2) metastases, respectively. Overall, high kPL showed concordance with biopsy-confirmed high-grade prostate cancer including neuroendocrine differentiation in one case. Interval decrease of kPL from 0.026 at baseline to 0.015?(s-1) was observed in a liver metastasis 2 months after the initiation of taxane plus platinum chemotherapy. RNA-seq found higher levels of the lactate dehydrogenase isoform A (Ldha,15.7?±?0.7) expression relative to the dominant isoform of pyruvate dehydrogenase (Pdha1, 12.8?±?0.9). CONCLUSIONS:HP 13C-pyruvate MRI can detect real-time glycolytic metabolism within prostate cancer metastases, and can measure changes in quantitative kPL values following treatment response at early time points. This first feasibility study supports future clinical studies of HP 13C-pyruvate MRI in the setting of advanced prostate cancer.
Project description:There is an unmet clinical need for new and robust imaging biomarkers to distinguish indolent from aggressive prostate cancer. Hallmarks of aggressive tumors such as a decrease in extracellular pH (pHe) can potentially be used to identify aggressive phenotypes. In this study, we employ an optimized, high signal-to-noise ratio hyperpolarized (HP) 13C pHe imaging method to discriminate between indolent and aggressive disease in a murine model of prostate cancer. Transgenic adenocarcinoma of the mouse prostate (TRAMP) mice underwent a multiparametric MR imaging exam, including HP [13C] bicarbonate MRI for pHe, with 1H apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) mapping and HP [1-13C] pyruvate MRI to study lactate metabolism. Tumor tissue was excised for histological staining and qRT-PCR to quantify mRNA expression for relevant glycolytic enzymes and transporters. We observed good separation in pHe between low- and high-grade tumor regions, with high-grade tumors demonstrating a lower pHe. The pHe also correlated strongly with monocarboxylate transporter Mct4 gene expression across all tumors, suggesting that lactate export via MCT4 is associated with acidification in this model. Our results implicate extracellular acidification as an indicator of indolent-to-aggressive transition in prostate cancer and suggest feasibility of HP pHe imaging to detect high-grade, clinically significant disease in men as part of a multiparametric MRI examination.
Project description:The purpose of this study was to test the effect of MK2206, an allosteric inhibitor of AKT, on the growth and invasion of patient-derived xenografts (PDX) of endometrial cancer. Three PDX lines, USC1 (uterine serous), EEC2 (endometrioid grade 2) and EEC4 (endometrioid grade 3) of endometrial cancer were grafted under the renal capsule of NSG mice. After 2 weeks of tumor growth the mice were treated with vehicle or 120mg/kg MK2206 twice a week for 3 weeks. Growth of all 3 PDX lines of different type and grade was significantly inhibited in response to MK2206 compared with vehicle control. Histological analysis revealed invasion and spread of EEC2 and EEC4 tumors were significantly decreased with MK2206 treatment. Immunohistochemical analysis showed a decrease in Ki67 in EEC2 upon MK2206 treatment, while USC1 and EEC4 tumors did not show differences in Ki67 levels. PR levels were evident in EEC2 which dramatically increased upon MK2206 treatment. In vitro analysis of EEC4 and AN3CA cells showed a dose-dependent decrease in p(Ser473)-AKT and p(Thr308)-AKT with MK2206. Invasion of EEC4 and AN3CA cells also significantly decreased after 36h and 72h of MK2206 treatment. PDX tumors provide an appropriate model for the testing of compounds that incorporates the heterogeneous nature of endometrial cancer. Further studies to determine efficacy of MK2206 alone or in combination with other compounds can also identify predictors of response to these pathway inhibitors.
Project description:While pancreatic cancer (PC) survival rates have recently shown modest improvement, the disease remains largely incurable. Early detection of pancreatic cancer may result in improved outcomes and therefore, methods for early detection of cancer, even premalignant lesions, may provide more favorable outcomes. Pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasias (PanINs) have been identified as premalignant precursor lesions to pancreatic cancer. However, conventional imaging methods used for screening high-risk populations do not have the sensitivity to detect PanINs. Here, we have employed hyperpolarized metabolic imaging in vivo and nuclear magnetic resonance (1H-NMR) metabolomics ex vivo to identify and understand metabolic changes, towards enabling detection of early PanINs and progression to advanced PanINs lesions that precede pancreatic cancer formation. Progression of disease from tissue containing predominantly low-grade PanINs to tissue with high-grade PanINs showed a decreasing alanine/lactate ratio from high-resolution NMR metabolomics ex vivo. Hyperpolarized magnetic resonance spectroscopy (HP-MRS) allows over 10,000-fold sensitivity enhancement relative to conventional magnetic resonance. Real-time HP-MRS was employed to measure non-invasively changes of alanine and lactate metabolites with disease progression and in control mice in vivo, following injection of hyperpolarized [1-13C] pyruvate. The alanine-to-lactate signal intensity ratio was found to decrease as the disease progressed from low-grade PanINs to high-grade PanINs. The biochemical changes of alanine transaminase (ALT) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) enzyme activity were assessed. These results demonstrate that there are significant alterations of ALT and LDH activities during the transformation from early to advanced PanINs lesions. Furthermore, we demonstrate that real-time conversion kinetic rate constants (kPA and kPL) can be used as metabolic imaging biomarkers of pancreatic premalignant lesions. Findings from this emerging HP-MRS technique can be translated to the clinic for detection of pancreatic premalignant lesion in high-risk populations.
Project description:Hyperpolarized magnetic resonance spectroscopy (HP MRS) using dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) is a technique that has greatly enhanced the sensitivity of detecting (13)C nuclei. However, the HP MRS polarization decays in the liquid state according to the spin-lattice relaxation time (T1) of the nucleus. Sampling of the signal also destroys polarization, resulting in a limited temporal ability to observe biologically interesting reactions. In this study, we demonstrate that sampling hyperpolarized signals using a permanent magnet at 1 Tesla (1T) is a simple and cost-effective method to increase T1s without sacrificing signal-to-noise. Biologically-relevant information may be obtained with a permanent magnet using enzyme solutions and in whole cells. Of significance, our findings indicate that changes in pyruvate metabolism can also be quantified in a xenograft model at this field strength.
Project description:MRI using hyperpolarized (HP) carbon-13 pyruvate is being investigated in clinical trials to provide non-invasive measurements of metabolism for cancer and cardiac imaging. In this project, we applied HP [1-13 C]pyruvate dynamic MRI in prostate cancer to measure the conversion from pyruvate to lactate, which is expected to increase in aggressive cancers. The goal of this work was to develop and test analysis methods for improved quantification of this metabolic conversion. In this work, we compared specialized kinetic modeling methods to estimate the pyruvate-to-lactate conversion rate, kPL , as well as the lactate-to-pyruvate area-under-curve (AUC) ratio. The kinetic modeling included an "inputless" method requiring no assumptions regarding the input function, as well as a method incorporating bolus characteristics in the fitting. These were first evaluated with simulated data designed to match human prostate data, where we examined the expected sensitivity of metabolism quantification to variations in kPL , signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), bolus characteristics, relaxation rates, and B1 variability. They were then applied to 17 prostate cancer patient datasets. The simulations indicated that the inputless method with fixed relaxation rates provided high expected accuracy with no sensitivity to bolus characteristics. The AUC ratio showed an undesired strong sensitivity to bolus variations. Fitting the input function as well did not improve accuracy over the inputless method. In vivo results showed qualitatively accurate kPL maps with inputless fitting. The AUC ratio was sensitive to bolus delivery variations. Fitting with the input function showed high variability in parameter maps. Overall, we found the inputless kPL fitting method to be a simple, robust approach for quantification of metabolic conversion following HP [1-13 C]pyruvate injection in human prostate cancer studies. This study also provided initial ranges of HP [1-13 C]pyruvate parameters (SNR, kPL , bolus characteristics) in the human prostate.
Project description:Background:The benefit of inducing cellular senescence as a tumor suppressive strategy remains questionable due to the senescence-associated secretory phenotype. Hence, studies and development of senolytic compounds that induce cell death in senescent cells have recently emerged. Senescent cells are hypothesized to exhibit different upregulated pro-survival/anti-apoptotic networks depending on the senescent inducers. This might limit the effect of a particular senolytic compound that targets rather only a specific pathway. Interestingly, cellular senescence in prostate cancer (PCa) cells can be induced by either androgen receptor (AR) agonists at supraphysiological androgen level (SAL) used in bipolar androgen therapy or by AR antagonists. This challenges to define ligand-specific senolytic compounds. Results:Here, we first induced cellular senescence by treating androgen-sensitive PCa LNCaP cells with either SAL or the AR antagonist Enzalutamide (ENZ). Subsequently, cells were incubated with the HSP90 inhibitor Ganetespib (GT), the Bcl-2 family inhibitor ABT263, or the Akt inhibitor MK2206 to analyze senolysis. GT and ABT263 are known senolytic compounds. We observed that GT exhibits senolytic activity specifically in SAL-pretreated PCa cells. Mechanistically, GT treatment results in reduction of AR, Akt, and phospho-S6 (p-S6) protein levels. Surprisingly, ABT263 lacks senolytic effect in both AR agonist- and antagonist-pretreated cells. ABT263 treatment does not affect AR, Akt, or S6 protein levels. Treatment with MK2206 does not reduce AR protein level and, as expected, potently inhibits Akt phosphorylation. However, ENZ-induced cellular senescent cells undergo apoptosis by MK2206, whereas SAL-treated cells are resistant. In line with this, we reveal that the pro-survival p-S6 level is higher in SAL-induced cellular senescent PCa cells compared to ENZ-treated cells. These data indicate a difference in the agonist- or antagonist-induced cellular senescence and suggest a novel role of MK2206 as a senolytic agent preferentially for AR antagonist-treated cells. Conclusion:Taken together, our data suggest that both AR agonist and antagonist induce cellular senescence but differentially upregulate a pro-survival signaling which preferentially sensitize androgen-sensitive PCa LNCaP cells to a specific senolytic compound.