To investigate the role of adiponectin receptor 2 (AdipoR2) in aggressive prostate cancer we used immunohistochemistry to characterize AdipoR2 protein expression in tumor tissue for 866 men with prostate cancer from the Physicians' Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study. AdipoR2 tumor expression was not associated with measures of obesity, pathological tumor stage or prostate-specific antigen (PSA) at diagnosis. However, AdipoR2 expression was positively associated with proliferation as measured by Ki-67 expression quartiles (P-trend < 0.0001), with expression of fatty acid synthase (P-trend = 0.001), and with two measures of angiogenesis (P-trend < 0.1). An inverse association was observed with apoptosis as assessed by the TUNEL assay (P-trend = 0.006). Using Cox proportional hazards regression and controlling for age at diagnosis, Gleason score, year of diagnosis category, cohort and baseline BMI, we identified a statistically significant trend for the association between quartile of AdipoR2 expression and lethal prostate cancer (P-trend = 0.02). The hazard ratio for lethal prostate cancer for the two highest quartiles, as compared to the two lowest quartiles, of AdipoR2 expression was 1.9 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.2-3.0). Results were similar when additionally controlling for categories of PSA at diagnosis and Ki-67 expression quartiles. These results strengthen the evidence for the role of AdipoR2 in prostate cancer progression.
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