ATG4B belongs to the autophagin family of cysteine proteases required for autophagy, an emerging target of cancer therapy. Developing pharmacological ATG4B inhibitors is a very active area of research. However, detailed studies on the role of ATG4B during anticancer therapy are lacking. By analyzing PC-3 and C4-2 prostate cancer cells overexpressing dominant negative ATG4B(C74A)in vitro and in vivo, we show that the effects of ATG4B(C74A) are cell type, treatment, and context-dependent. ATG4B(C74A) expression can either amplify the effects of cytotoxic therapies or contribute to treatment resistance. Thus, the successful clinical application of ATG4B inhibitors will depend on finding predictive markers of response.
Keywords: ATG4B; Autophagy; Chemotherapy; Prostate cancer; Radiation therapy.
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