Distinct tumor microenvironments of lytic and blastic bone metastases in prostate cancer patients.J Immunother Cancer 2019; 7(1):293JI
The most common metastatic lesions of prostate cancer are in bone and can be classified into three distinct pathology subtypes: lytic, blastic, and an indeterminate mixture of both. We investigated a cohort of decalcified formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded (FFPE) patient specimens from the bone that contained metastatic prostate cancer with lytic or blastic features. These tissue sections were utilized for immunohistochemistry (IHC) staining, isolation of RNA for gene expression, and Digital Spatial Profiling (DSP) of changes in both the tumor and microenvironment. A diverse set of unique immune cell populations and signaling pathways to both lytic and blastic types of prostate cancer metastases were present. In blastic lesions immune cells were enriched for pSTAT3 and components of the JAK-STAT pathway. In lytic-type lesions, immune cells were enriched for pAKT activity and components of the PI3K-AKT pathway. Enrichment for immune checkpoints including PD-L1, B7-H4, OX40L, and IDO-1 were identified in blastic prostate cancer, providing new therapeutic targets for patients with bone metastases. Biopsies could guide selection of patients into appropriate therapeutic interventions based on protein levels and RNA expression of desired targets in metastatic disease. Molecular pathology has been an excellent complement to the diagnosis, treatment, and management of primary tumors and could be successfully extended to patients with metastatic lesions.