Statin derivatives as therapeutic agents for castration-resistant prostate cancer

Matthew A. Ingersoll, Dannah R. Miller, October Martinez, C. Brent Wakefield, Kuan Chan Hsieh, M. Vijaya Simha, Chai Lin Kao, Hui Ting Chen, Surinder K. Batra, Ming Fong Lin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Despite recent advances in modern medicine, castration-resistant prostate cancer remains an incurable disease. Subpopulations of prostate cancer cells develop castration-resistance by obtaining the complete steroidogenic ability to synthesize androgens from cholesterol. Statin derivatives, such as simvastatin, inhibit cholesterol biosynthesis and may reduce prostate cancer incidence as well as progression to advanced, metastatic phenotype. In this study, we demonstrate novel simvastatin-related molecules SVA, AM1, and AM2 suppress the tumorigenicity of prostate cancer cell lines including androgen receptor-positive LNCaP C-81 and VCaP as well as androgen receptor-negative PC-3 and DU145. This is achieved through inhibition of cell proliferation, colony formation, and migration as well as induction of S-phase cell-cycle arrest and apoptosis. While the compounds effectively block androgen receptor signaling, their mechanism of inhibition also includes suppression of the AKT pathway, in part, through disruption of the plasma membrane. SVA also possess an added effect on cell growth inhibition when combined with docetaxel. In summary, of the compounds studied, SVA is the most potent inhibitor of prostate cancer cell tumorigenicity, demonstrating its potential as a promising therapeutic agent for castration-resistant prostate cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)94-105
Number of pages12
JournalCancer Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2016


  • AKT
  • Androgen receptor
  • Cholesterol
  • ErbB-2
  • Simvastatin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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