Background: It has been suggested that interleukin-6 (IL-6) may modulate androgen receptor (AR) action to accelerate prostate cancer (PCa) progression. Selenium compounds are highly recommended as a promising chemopreventive agent for PCa. This study was to determine if selenium can repress IL-6 mediated AR action in PCa progression.
Methods: Cell proliferation, prostate-specific antigen, gene transfer, and Western blot assays were used to study the effects of sodium selenite and methylseleninic acid on IL-6 mediated AR action on an AR expressing human prostate cancer cell line, LNCaP.
Results: We found that sodium selenite, but not methylseleninic acid, significantly (p<0.05) inhibited IL-6-induced trans-activating activity of AR and cell proliferation in LNCaP cells. Interestingly, although sodium selenite did not show effect on activation of both STAT3 and ERK1/2 in the presence of IL-6, an increased expression of c-Jun was detected in cells after treatment with sodium selenite. Indeed, we showed overexpression of c-Jun blocked IL-6-induced AR activation.
Conclusions: Taken together, our results suggest that sodium selenite not methylseleninic acid can inhibit IL-6-mediated AR activation by increased c-Jun in LNCaP cells. Sodium selenite may be a proper selenium form for further testing its potency on intervening IL-6-mediated PCa progression.