ARTICLE ABSTRACTRadium-223 prolongs survival in a fraction of men with bone metastatic prostate cancer (PCa). However, there are no markers for monitoring response and resistance to Radium-223 treatment. Exosomes are mediators of intercellular communication and may reflect response of the bone microenvironment to Radium-223 treatment. We performed molecular profiling of exosomes and compared the molecular profile in patients with favorable and unfavorable overall survival.
We performed exosomal transcriptome analysis in plasma derived from our preclinical models (MDA-PCa 118b tumors, TRAMP-C2/BMP4 PCa) and from the plasma of 25 patients (paired baseline and end of treatment) treated with Radium-223. All samples were run in duplicate, and array data analyzed with fold changes +2 to −2 and P < 0.05.
We utilized the preclinical models to establish that genes derived from the tumor and the tumor-associated bone microenvironment (bTME) are differentially enriched in plasma exosomes upon Radium-223 treatment. The mouse transcriptome analysis revealed changes in bone-related and DNA damage repair–related pathways. Similar findings were observed in plasma-derived exosomes from patients treated with Radium-223 detected changes. In addition, exosomal transcripts detected immune-suppressors (e.g., PD-L1) that were associated with shorter survival to Radium-223. Treatment of the Myc-CaP mouse model with a combination of Radium-223 and immune checkpoint therapy (ICT) resulted in greater efficacy than monotherapy.
These clinical and coclinical analyses showed that RNA profiling of plasma exosomes may be used for monitoring the bTME in response to treatment and that ICT may be used to increase the efficacy of Radium-223.