The serine/threonine protein kinase, p90 ribosomal S6 kinase, is an important regulator of prostate cancer cell proliferation

Cancer Res. 2005 Apr 15;65(8):3108-16. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-04-3151.


An increase in the activity of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) has been correlated with the progression of prostate cancer to advanced disease in humans. The serine/threonine protein kinase p90-kDa ribosomal S6 kinase (RSK) is an important downstream effector of MAPK but its role in prostate cancer has not previously been examined. Increasing RSK isoform 2 (RSK2) levels in the human prostate cancer line, LNCaP, enhanced prostate-specific antigen (PSA) expression, an important diagnostic marker for prostate cancer, whereas inhibiting RSK activity using a RSK-specific inhibitor, 3Ac-SL0101, decreased PSA expression. The RSK2 regulation of PSA expression occurred via a mechanism involving both RSK2 kinase activity and its ability to associate with the coactivator, p300. RNA interference of the androgen receptor (AR) showed that the AR was important in the RSK2-mediated increase in PSA expression. RSK levels are higher in approximately 50% of human prostate cancers compared with normal prostate tissue, which suggests that increased RSK levels may participate in the rise in PSA expression that occurs in prostate cancer. Furthermore, 3Ac-SL0101 inhibited proliferation of the LNCaP line and the androgen-independent human prostate cancer line, PC-3. These results suggest that proliferation of some prostate cancer cells is dependent on RSK activity and support the hypothesis that RSK may be an important chemotherapeutic target for prostate cancer.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Cell Growth Processes / physiology
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen / biosynthesis
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen / genetics
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / enzymology*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / genetics
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology
  • Receptors, Androgen / genetics
  • Receptors, Androgen / physiology
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 90-kDa / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 90-kDa / biosynthesis
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 90-kDa / genetics
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 90-kDa / metabolism*
  • Transcriptional Activation
  • Transfection


  • Receptors, Androgen
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 90-kDa
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen