Inhibition of Renalase Expression and Signaling Has Antitumor Activity in Pancreatic Cancer

Sci Rep. 2016 Mar 14;6:22996. doi: 10.1038/srep22996.


An essential feature of cancer is dysregulation of cell senescence and death. Renalase, a recently discovered secreted flavoprotein, provides cytoprotection against ischemic and toxic cellular injury by signaling through the PI3K-AKT and MAPK pathways. Here we show that renalase expression is increased in pancreatic cancer tissue and that it functions as a growth factor. In a cohort of patients with pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma, overall survival was inversely correlated with renalase expression in the tumor mass, suggesting a pathogenic role for renalase. Inhibition of renalase signaling using siRNA or inhibitory anti-renalase antibodies decreased the viability of cultured pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma cells. In two xenograft mouse models, either the renalase monoclonal antibody m28-RNLS or shRNA knockdown of renalase inhibited pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma growth. Inhibition of renalase caused tumor cell apoptosis and cell cycle arrest. These results reveal a previously unrecognized role for the renalase in cancer: its expression may serve as a prognostic maker and its inhibition may provide an attractive therapeutic target in pancreatic cancer.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Animals
  • Antibodies / pharmacology
  • Apoptosis / drug effects
  • Apoptosis / genetics
  • Carcinoma, Pancreatic Ductal / drug therapy
  • Carcinoma, Pancreatic Ductal / genetics*
  • Carcinoma, Pancreatic Ductal / metabolism
  • Cell Cycle Checkpoints / drug effects
  • Cell Cycle Checkpoints / genetics
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Male
  • Mice, Nude
  • Middle Aged
  • Monoamine Oxidase / genetics*
  • Monoamine Oxidase / immunology
  • Monoamine Oxidase / metabolism
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases / metabolism
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt / metabolism
  • RNA Interference*
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Signal Transduction / drug effects
  • Xenograft Model Antitumor Assays / methods


  • Antibodies
  • Monoamine Oxidase
  • renalase
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt