Davy T Lee

The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Hong Kong

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Publications (3)13.91 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The recent introduction of docetaxel in the treatment of hormone refractory prostate cancer (HRPC) has made a small but significant impact on patient survival. However, its effect is limited by intolerance and resistance. The aim of our study was to investigate if the garlic-derived compound, S-allylmercaptocysteine (SAMC), was able to act as a docetaxel sensitizing agent. First, the effect of SAMC on docetaxel sensitivity was examined on 3 HRPC cell lines by colony forming assay. We found that SAMC increased the efficacy of docetaxel on colony forming inhibition by 9-50% compared to single agent treatment. Second, using the HRPC CWR22R nude mice model, we found that the combination of SAMC and docetaxel was 53% more potent than docetaxel alone (p = 0.037). In addition, there was no additive toxicity in the mice treated with the combination therapy evidenced by histological and functional analysis of liver, kidney and bone marrow. These results suggest that SAMC is able to increase the anticancer effect of docetaxel without causing additional toxic effect in vivo. Third, flow cytometry and Western blotting analysis on HRPC cell lines demonstrated that SAMC promoted docetaxel-induced G2/M phase cell cycle arrest and apoptotic induction. In addition, immunohistochemistry on CWR22R xenograft revealed a suppression of Bcl-2 expression and upregulation of E-cadherin in the SAMC and docetaxel treated animals. These results suggest that SAMC may promote docetaxel-induced cell death through promoting G2/M cell cycle arrest and apoptosis. Our study implies a potential role for SAMC in improving docetaxel based chemotherapy for the treatment of HRPC.
    Preview · Article · May 2008 · International Journal of Cancer
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    ABSTRACT: The presence of circulating tumor cells (CTC) is common in prostate cancer patients, however until recently their clinical significance was unknown. The CTC stage is essential for the formation of distant metastases, and their continuing presence after radical prostatectomy has been shown to predict recurrent or latent disease. Despite their mechanistic and prognostic importance, due both to their scarcity and difficulties in their isolation, little is known about the characteristics that enable their production and survival. The aim of this study was to investigate the molecular mechanisms underlying the survival of CTC cells. A novel CTC cell line from the bloodstream of an orthotopic mouse model of castration-resistant prostate cancer was established and compared with the primary tumor using attachment assays, detachment culture, Western blot, flow cytometry and 2D gel electrophoresis. Decreased adhesiveness and expression of adhesion molecules E-cadherin, beta4-integrin and gamma-catenin, together with resistance to detachment and drug-induced apoptosis and upregulation of Bcl-2 were integral to the development of CTC and their survival. Using proteomic studies, we observed that the GRP94 glycoprotein was suppressed in CTC. GRP94 was also shown to be suppressed in a tissue microarray study of 79 prostate cancer patients, indicating its possible role in prostate cancer progression. Overall, this study suggests molecular alterations accounting for the release and survival of CTC, which may be used as drug targets for either anti-metastatic therapy or the suppression of latent disease. We also indicate the novel involvement of GRP94 suppression in prostate cancer metastasis.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2008 · Clinical and Experimental Metastasis
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    ABSTRACT: The failure of prostate cancer treatment is largely due to the development of androgen independence, since the androgen depletion therapy remains the front-line option for this cancer. Previously, we reported that over-expression of the helix-loop-helix protein Id-1 was associated with progression of prostate cancer and ectopic expression of Id-1 induced serum-independent proliferation in prostate cancer cells. In the present study, we investigated if exogenous Id-1 expression in the androgen sensitive LNCaP cells had any effect on androgen-dependent cell growth and studied the molecular mechanisms involved. Using stable Id-1 transfectants, we found that expression of Id-1 was able to reduce androgen-stimulated growth and S phase fraction of the cell cycle in LNCaP cells, indicating that Id-1 may be involved in the development of androgen independence in these cells. The Id-1-induced androgen-independent prostate cancer cell growth was correlated with up-regulation of EGF-R (epidermal growth factor-receptor) and PSA (prostate specific antigen) expression, as confirmed by western blotting analysis and luciferase assays. In contrast, down-regulation of Id-1 in androgen-independent DU145 cells by its antisense oligonucleotides resulted in suppression of EGF-R expression at both transcriptional and protein levels. In addition, the results from immunohistochemistry study showed that Id-1 expression was significantly elevated in hormone refractory prostate cancer tissues when compared with the hormone-dependent tumours. Our results suggest that up-regulation of Id-1 in prostate cancer cells may be one of the mechanisms responsible for developing androgen independence and this process may be regulated through induction of EGF-R expression. Inactivation of Id-1 may provide a potential therapeutic strategy leading to inhibition of androgen-independent prostate cancer cell growth.
    Preview · Article · May 2004 · Carcinogenesis