Background: Our previous work showed a significant reduction of tumor growth, macrophage infiltration, circulating IGF-1, and mTOR activation with low protein diet in a patient derived xenograft model of prostate cancer. The evolutionarily conserved, nutrient sensing, mTOR pathway plays a central role in both development of advanced stage prostate cancer and immune responsiveness. This study presents novel data on the impact of dietary protein modification on the function of the host immune system in response to prostate cancer and immunotherapy.

Methods: Our In vitro studies utilized bone marrow or tumor derived (RP-B6 Myc) macrophages. In vivo studies utilized the recently characterized RP-B6 Myc model. Mice were fed ad libitum control or methionine restricted diets for four weeks prior to S.C. implantation with ~1mm2 tumor pieces. Treatment of survivin peptide vaccine (1mg/ml S.C. 1 X week) and anti-PD-1 (20mg/kg I.P. 2 X week) began at ~50mm2 tumor size. Tumor volumes were blindly recorded 2 X week. End point analyses include: tumor weight, flow cytometric analysis, proteomic profiler analyses, and microbiome analyses from each diet and treatment group.

Results: We show here that while methionine restriction (MR) has little impact on our RP-B6 Myc prostate cancer cell line, it does yield a significant alteration in both the polarization and function of M1 and M2 macrophages. In the in vitro MR conditions, we observed significantly enhanced polarization of M1 macrophages and reduced polarization of M2 macrophages. Functional analysis revealed increased tumoricidal activity of both M1, ‘antitumor’, and M2, ‘pro-tumor,’ macrophages suggesting a flip in M2 function from tumor-promoting to tumoricidal. Further analysis of the released cytokines in MR media conditions yielded significant increase of antitumor cytokines & chemokines, such as IL-12, IL-27, CXCL9, CXCL10, CXCL11, CCL2, CCL4, and TNF-alpha, a double-edged sword which in our system correlates with decreased cancer cell viability upon co-culture with amino acid restricted M1 and M2 macrophages. Our preliminary results show dietary MR yielding a significant inhibition of prostate cancer growth in the RP-B6-Myc model and our ongoing study with survivin peptide vaccine and anti-PD-1 immunotherapies will be available to present in the conference.

Conclusions: Our data suggest that restricting methionine is sufficient to alter both the polarization and tumoricidal function of macrophages. Our preliminarily results show that restricted dietary methionine is able to inhibit prostate cancer growth, modify the host immune response and better inhibit prostate cancer growth alone or in combination with immunotherapy. These results provide a strong basis to consider diet restriction as a means to limit cancer growth targeting tumor immune system and potentially to enhance cancer patient responses to immunotherapy.

Citation Format: Ashley R. Orillion, Sreenivasulu Chintala, Remi Adelaiye-Ogala, Li Shen, Nur Damayanti, May Elbanna, Sreevani Arisa, Bennett Elzey, Chinghai Kao, Luigi Fontana, Roberto Pili. Methionine restriction increases macrophage tumoricidal activity and significantly inhibits prostate cancer growth [abstract]. In: Proceedings of the American Association for Cancer Research Annual Meeting 2017; 2017 Apr 1-5; Washington, DC. Philadelphia (PA): AACR; Cancer Res 2017;77(13 Suppl):Abstract nr 250. doi:10.1158/1538-7445.AM2017-250