UMMS Affiliation

Department of Molecular, Cell and Cancer Biology; UMass Metabolic Network

Publication Date

8-14-2017

Document Type

Article

Disciplines

Biochemistry | Cancer Biology | Cell Biology | Cellular and Molecular Physiology | Molecular Biology | Neoplasms

Abstract

Obesity is an established risk factor for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA). Despite recent identification of metabolic alterations in this lethal malignancy, the metabolic dependencies of obesity-associated PDA remain unknown. Here we show that obesity-driven PDA exhibits accelerated growth and a striking transcriptional enrichment for pathways regulating nitrogen metabolism. We find that the mitochondrial form of arginase (ARG2), which hydrolyzes arginine into ornithine and urea, is induced upon obesity, and silencing or loss of ARG2 markedly suppresses PDA. In vivo infusion of (15)N-glutamine in obese mouse models of PDA demonstrates enhanced nitrogen flux into the urea cycle and infusion of (15)N-arginine shows that Arg2 loss causes significant ammonia accumulation that results from the shunting of arginine catabolism into alternative nitrogen repositories. Furthermore, analysis of PDA patient tumors indicates that ARG2 levels correlate with body mass index (BMI). The specific dependency of PDA on ARG2 rather than the principal hepatic enzyme ARG1 opens a therapeutic window for obesity-associated pancreatic cancer.Obesity is an established risk factor for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA). Here the authors show that obesity induces the expression of the mitochondrial form of arginase ARG2 in PDA and that ARG2 silencing or loss results in ammonia accumulation and suppression of obesity-driven PDA tumor growth.

Keywords

Cancer metabolism, Metabolism, Pancreatic cancer

Rights and Permissions

Copyright © The Author(s) 2017. Open Access. This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

DOI of Published Version

10.1038/s41467-017-00331-y

Source

Nat Commun. 2017 Aug 14;8(1):242. doi: 10.1038/s41467-017-00331-y. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Nature communications

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID

28808255

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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