The twofold purpose of the study was (a) to determine if a MAP-1-like protein was expressed in human prostatic DU 145 cells and (b) to demonstrate whether a novel antimicrotubule drug, estramustine, binds the MAP-1-like protein to disrupt microtubules. SDS-PAGE and Western blots showed that a 330-kD protein was associated with microtubules isolated in an assembly buffer containing 10 microM taxol and 10 mM adenylylimidodiphosphate. After purification to homogeneity on an A5m agarose column, the 330-kD protein was found to promote 6 S tubulin assembly. Turbidimetric (A350), SDS-PAGE, and electron microscopic studies revealed that micromolar estramustine inhibited assembly promoted by the 330-kD protein. Similarly, estramustine inhibited binding of the 330-kD protein to 6-S microtubules independently stimulated to assemble with taxol. Immunofluorescent studies with beta-tubulin antibody (27B) and MAP-1 antibody (MI-AI) revealed that 60 microM estramustine (a) caused disassembly of MAP-1 microtubules in DU 145 cells and (b) removed MAP-1 from the surfaces of microtubules stabilized with 0.1 microM taxol. Taken together the data suggested that estramustine binds to a 330-kD MAP-1-like protein to disrupt microtubules in tumor cells.

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