Expression of toll-like receptor-9 is increased in poorly differentiated prostate tumors.

Academic Article


  • BACKGROUND: Toll-like receptor-9 (TLR9) is a cellular receptor for bacterial and vertebrate DNA. In addition to cells of the immune system, it is also expressed in various human cancer cell lines, including prostate cancer. We demonstrated previously that synthetic TLR9 ligands induce matrix metalloproteinase-13-mediated invasion in TLR9-expressing prostate cancer cells in vitro. Other studies have suggested possible sex steroid regulation of the function of the various TLRs. The role of TLR9 in the pathophysiology of prostate or any cancer is, however, unknown. METHODS: Expression of TLR9, androgen receptor (AR), or the estrogen receptors alpha (ERalpha) and beta (ERbeta) were studied with immunohistochemistry in prostate cancer (n = 62) and benign prostatic hyperplasia (n = 45) specimens. TLR9 staining scores were compared with tumor stage, Gleason score, prostate-specific antigen (PSA) concentrations before tissue sampling and with the staining scores of AR, ERalpha, and ERbeta. RESULTS: TLR9 expression was statistically significantly increased in prostate cancer epithelium and stroma, as compared with the same cellular compartments in benign hyperplasia. Significantly increased (P = 0.04) TLR9 expression was detected in cancers with high Gleason score (>7, n = 23), as compared with lower Gleason scores (< or =7, n = 39). No statistically significant associations were detected between TLR9 expression scores and PSA concentrations or tumor staging. Prostate adenocarcinoma cells were all positive for TLR9, AR, and ERbeta but negative for ERalpha expression. In cancer stroma cells, increased TLR9 expression was associated with increased ERalpha expression. CONCLUSIONS: Expression of TLR9 is increased in prostate cancer specimens, especially in the most poorly differentiated forms.
  • Published In

  • Prostate  Journal
  • Keywords

  • Adenocarcinoma, Adult, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Epithelium, Estrogen Receptor alpha, Estrogen Receptor beta, Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic, Humans, Immunohistochemistry, Male, Middle Aged, Neoplasm Staging, Prostate, Prostate-Specific Antigen, Prostatic Hyperplasia, Prostatic Neoplasms, Receptors, Androgen, Toll-Like Receptor 9
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Väisänen M-R; Väisänen T; Jukkola-Vuorinen A; Vuopala KS; Desmond R; Selander KS; Vaarala MH
  • Start Page

  • 817
  • End Page

  • 824
  • Volume

  • 70
  • Issue

  • 8