Background: Both taxanes, docetaxel and cabazitaxel, are effective treatments for metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC). However, resistance to taxanes is common. Our objective was to investigate mechanisms of taxane resistance in prostate cancer. Methods: Two docetaxel-resistant patient-derived xenografts (PDXs) of CRPC were established (PC339-DOC and PC346C-DOC) in male athymic nude mice by frequent intraperitoneal administrations of docetaxel. Next-generation sequencing was performed on PDX tissue pre- and post-docetaxel resistance and gene expression profiles were compared. [14C]-docetaxel and [14C]-cabazitaxel uptake assays in vitro and cytotoxicity assays were performed to validate direct involvement of transporter genes in taxane sensitivity. Results: Organic anion-transporting polypeptide (SLCO1B3), an influx transporter of docetaxel, was significantly downregulated in PC346C-DOC tumours. In accordance with this finding, intratumoural concentrations of docetaxel and cabazitaxel were significantly decreased in PC346C-DOC as compared with levels in chemotherapy-naive PC346C tumours. In addition, silencing of SLCO1B3 in chemo-naive PC346C resulted in a two-fold decrease in intracellular concentrations of both taxanes. Overexpression of SLCO1B3 showed higher sensitivity to docetaxel and cabazitaxel. Conclusions: The SLCO1B3 determines intracellular concentrations of docetaxel and cabazitaxel and consequently influences taxane efficacy. Loss of the drug transporter SLCO1B3 may drive taxane resistance in prostate cancer.

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British Journal of Cancer
Department of Urology

de Morrée, E., Böttcher, R., van Soest, R. J., Aghai, A., de Ridder, C., Gibson, A. A., … van Weerden, W. (2016). Loss of SLCO1B3 drives taxane resistance in prostate cancer. British Journal of Cancer, 115(6), 674–681. doi:10.1038/bjc.2016.251