Identification and characterization of PLZF as a prostatic androgen-responsive gene

Prostate. 2004 Jun 1;59(4):426-35. doi: 10.1002/pros.20000.


Background: Promyelocytic leukemia zinc finger protein (PLZF) was initially identified by virtue of its fusion with RARalpha as a result of a variant t(11;17) chromosomal translocation that occurs in a small subset of acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL) patients. PLZF has been reported to have pro-apoptotic and anti-proliferative activity both in vivo and in vitro.

Methods: Using a modified subtractive hybridization, we identified PLZF as an androgen-responsive gene in the rat ventral prostate. Northern blot and Western blot were used to characterize the regulation of PLZF by androgens in LNCaP cells. Stable transfections of PLZF in LNCaP cells were performed to assay the effect of PLZF overexpression on LNCaP cell proliferation.

Results: PLZF mRNA was transiently up-regulated by androgens in the regressed ventral prostate of castrated adult rat. PLZF was also up-regulated by androgens, at both mRNA and protein levels, in the androgen-responsive human prostate cancer cell line LNCaP. Androgen induction of PLZF mRNA was not inhibited by protein synthesis inhibitor cycloheximide but inhibited by androgen receptor antagonist bicalutamide, indicating that PLZF is a direct androgen-responsive gene. To study the functions of PLZF in androgen action, LNCaP sublines stably overexpressing PLZF were generated. PLZF overexpression inhibited LNCaP proliferation either in the presence or absence of androgen, which is consistent with the reported anti-proliferative activity of PLZF.

Conclusions: The above observations indicate that PLZF is an androgen-responsive gene with anti-proliferative activity in prostate cancer cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Androgens / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Blotting, Northern
  • Blotting, Western
  • Cell Division
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Humans
  • Kruppel-Like Transcription Factors
  • Male
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Promyelocytic Leukemia Zinc Finger Protein
  • Prostate / physiology*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology*
  • RNA, Messenger / biosynthesis
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Transcription Factors / biosynthesis*
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured
  • Up-Regulation
  • Zinc Fingers


  • Androgens
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Kruppel-Like Transcription Factors
  • Promyelocytic Leukemia Zinc Finger Protein
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Transcription Factors
  • ZBTB16 protein, human