Resistance to the current therapies is the main clinical challenge in the treatment of lethal metastatic prostate cancer (mPCa). Developing novel therapeutic approaches with effective regimes and minimal side effects for this fatal disease remain a priority in prostate cancer study. In the present study, we demonstrated that a traditional Chinese medicine, quality-assured Ganoderma tsugae ethanol extract (GTEE), significantly suppressed cell growth and metastatic capability and caused cell cycle arrest through decreasing expression of cyclins in mPCa cells, PC-3 and DU145 cells. GTEE also induced caspase-dependent apoptosis in mPCa cells. We further showed the potent therapeutic efficacy of GTEE by inhibiting subcutaneous PC-3 tumor growth in a xenograft model. The in vitro and in vivo efficacies on mPCa cells were due to blockade of the PI3K/Akt and MAPK/ERK signaling pathways associated with cancer cell growth, survival and apoptosis. These preclinical data provide the molecular basis for a new potential therapeutic approach toward the treatment of lethal prostate cancer progression.
Keywords: Chinese herbal medicine; Ganoderma tsugae; anti-cancer efficacy; metastasis; prostate cancer.