Activity of the multikinase inhibitor sorafenib in combination with cytarabine in acute myeloid leukemia.
ABSTRACT: Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a genetically heterogeneous cancer that frequently exhibits aberrant kinase signaling. We investigated a treatment strategy combining sorafenib, a multikinase inhibitor with limited single-agent activity in AML, and cytarabine, a key component of AML chemotherapy.Using 10 human AML cell lines, we determined the effects of sorafenib (10 ?M) on antileukemic activity by measuring cell viability, proliferation, ERK1/2 signaling, and apoptosis. We also investigated the effects of sorafenib treatment on the accumulation of cytarabine and phosphorylated metabolites in vitro. A human equivalent dose of sorafenib in nontumor-bearing NOD-SCID-IL2R?(null) mice was determined by pharmacokinetic studies using high performance liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometric detection, and steady-state concentrations were estimated by the fit of a one-compartment pharmacokinetic model to concentration-time data. The antitumor activity of sorafenib alone (60 mg/kg) twice daily, cytarabine alone (6.25 mg/kg administered intraperitoneally), or sorafenib once or twice daily plus cytarabine was evaluated in NOD-SCID-IL2R?(null) mice bearing AML xenografts.Sorafenib at 10 ?M inhibited cell viability, proliferation and ERK1/2 signaling, and induced apoptosis in all cell lines studied. Sorafenib also increased the cellular accumulation of cytarabine and metabolites resulting in additive to synergistic antileukemic activity. A dose of 60 mg/kg in mice produced a human equivalent sorafenib steady-state plasma exposure of 10 ?M. The more dose-intensive twice-daily sorafenib plus cytarabine (n = 15) statistically significantly prolonged median survival in an AML xenograft model compared with sorafenib once daily plus cytarabine (n = 12), cytarabine alone (n = 26), or controls (n = 27) (sorafenib twice daily plus cytarabine, median survival = 46 days; sorafenib once daily plus cytarabine, median survival = 40 days; cytarabine alone, median survival = 36 days; control, median survival = 19 days; P < .001 for combination twice daily vs all other treatments listed).Sorafenib in combination with cytarabine resulted in strong anti-AML activity in vitro and in vivo. These results warrant clinical evaluation of sorafenib with cytarabine-based regimens in molecularly heterogeneous AML.
Project description:Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) remains a challenging disease to treat and urgently requires new therapies to improve its treatment outcome. In this study, we investigated the molecular mechanisms underlying the cooperative antileukemic activities of panobinostat and cytarabine or daunorubicin (DNR) in AML cell lines and diagnostic blast samples in vitro and in vivo. Panobinostat suppressed expression of BRCA1, CHK1, and RAD51 in AML cells in a dose-dependent manner. Further, panobinostat significantly increased cytarabine- or DNR-induced DNA double-strand breaks and apoptosis, and abrogated S and/or G2/M cell cycle checkpoints. Analogous results were obtained by shRNA knockdown of BRCA1, CHK1, or RAD51. Cotreatment of NOD-SCID-IL2R?(null) mice bearing AML xenografts with panobinostat and cytarabine significantly increased survival compared to either cytarabine or panobinostat treatment alone. Additional studies revealed that panobinostat suppressed the expression of BRCA1, CHK1, and RAD51 through downregulation of E2F1 transcription factor. Our results establish a novel mechanism underlying the cooperative antileukemic activities of these drug combinations in which panobinostat suppresses expression of BRCA1, CHK1, and RAD51 to enhance cytarabine and daunorubicin sensitivities in AML cells.
Project description:PURPOSE To determine the efficacy and toxicity of the combination of sorafenib, cytarabine, and idarubicin in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) younger than age 65 years. PATIENTS AND METHODS In the phase I part of the study, 10 patients with relapsed AML were treated with escalating doses of sorafenib with chemotherapy to establish the feasibility of the combination. We then treated 51 patients (median age, 53 years; range, 18 to 65 years) who had previously untreated AML with cytarabine at 1.5 g/m(2) by continuous intravenous (IV) infusion daily for 4 days (3 days if > 60 years of age), idarubicin at 12 mg/m(2) IV daily for 3 days, and sorafenib at 400 mg orally twice daily for 7 days. RESULTS Overall, 38 (75%) patients have achieved a complete remission (CR), including 14 (93%) of 15 patients with mutated FMS-like tyrosine kinase-3 (FLT3; the 15th patient had complete remission with incomplete platelet recovery [CRp]) and 24 (66%) of 36 patients with FLT3 wild-type (WT) disease (three additional FLT3-WT patients had CRp). FLT3-mutated patients were more likely to achieve a CR than FLT3-WT patients (P = .033). With a median follow-up of 54 weeks (range, 8 to 87 weeks), the probability of survival at 1 year is 74%. Among the FLT3-mutated patients, 10 have relapsed and five remain in CR with a median follow-up of 62 weeks (range, 10 to 76 weeks). Plasma inhibitory assay demonstrated an on-target effect on FLT3 kinase activity. CONCLUSION Sorafenib can be safely combined with chemotherapy, produces a high CR rate in FLT3-mutated patients, and inhibits FLT3 signaling.
Project description:To assess the toxicity, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacodynamics of multikinase inhibitor sorafenib in combination with clofarabine and cytarabine in children with relapsed/refractory leukemia.Twelve patients with acute leukemia (11 with acute myeloid leukemia [AML]) received sorafenib on days 1 to 7 and then concurrently with cytarabine (1 g/m(2)) and clofarabine (stratum one: 40 mg/m(2), n = 10; stratum two [recent transplantation or fungal infection]: 20 mg/m(2), n = 2) on days 8 to 12. Sorafenib was continued until day 28 if tolerated. Two sorafenib dose levels (200 mg/m(2) and 150 mg/m(2) twice daily) were planned. Sorafenib pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic studies were performed on days 7 and 8.At sorafenib 200 mg/m(2), two of four patients in stratum one and one of two patients in stratum two had grade 3 hand-foot skin reaction and/or rash as dose-limiting toxicities (DLTs). No DLTs were observed in six patients in stratum one at sorafenib 150 mg/m(2). Sorafenib inhibited the phosphorylation of AKT, S6 ribosomal protein, and 4E-BP1 in leukemia cells. The rate of sorafenib conversion to its metabolite sorafenib N-oxide was high (mean, 33%; range, 17% to 69%). In vitro, the N-oxide potently inhibited FLT3-internal tandem duplication (ITD; binding constant, 70 nmol/L) and the viability of five AML cell lines. On day 8, sorafenib decreased blast percentages in 10 of 12 patients (median, 66%; range, 9% to 95%). After combination chemotherapy, six patients (three FLT3-ITD and three FLT3 wild-type AML) achieved complete remission, two (both FLT3-ITD AML) had complete remission with incomplete blood count recovery, and one (FLT3 wild-type AML) had partial remission.Sorafenib in combination with clofarabine and cytarabine is tolerable and shows activity in relapsed/refractory pediatric AML.
Project description:Glasdegib is a Hedgehog pathway inhibitor. This ongoing, open-label, phase 2 study (NCT01546038) evaluated glasdegib plus cytarabine/daunorubicin in patients with untreated acute myeloid leukemia (AML) or high-risk myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS). Patients received glasdegib 100 mg orally, once daily in continuous 28-day?cycles from day -3, with intravenous cytarabine 100?mg/m2 on days 1-7 and daunorubicin 60?mg/m2 on days 1-3. Patients in remission then received consolidation therapy (2-4 cycles of cytarabine 1 g/m2 twice daily on days 1, 3, 5 of each cycle), followed by maintenance glasdegib (maximum 6 cycles). Primary endpoint was complete remission (CR) in patients aged ?55?years. Secondary endpoints included overall survival (OS), safety and outcome by mutational status. Patients had a median (range) age of 64.0 (27-75) years, 60.0% were male, and 84.5% were white. In 69 evaluable patients, 46.4% (80% confidence interval [CI]: 38.7-54.1) achieved investigator-reported CR. Among patients ?55?years old (n =?60), 40.0% (80% CI 31.9-48.1) achieved CR. Among all 69 patients, median OS was 14.9 (80% CI 13.4-19.3) months, with 12-month survival probability 66.6% (80% CI 58.5-73.4). The most common treatment-related adverse events (?50% patients) were diarrhea and nausea. There were no significant associations between mutational status (12 genes) and clinical response, suggesting potential benefit across diverse molecular profiles. Glasdegib plus cytarabine/daunorubicin was well tolerated and associated with clinical activity in patients with untreated AML or high-risk MDS. A randomized phase 3 trial of glasdegib in combination with chemotherapy (7 + 3 schedule) is ongoing.
Project description:To determine the possibility of synergistic antileukemic activity and the underlying molecular mechanisms associated with cytarabine combined with valproic acid (VPA; a histone deacetylase inhibitor and a Food and Drug Administration-licensed drug for treating both children and adults with epilepsy) in pediatric acute myeloid leukemia (AML).The type and extent of antileukemic interactions between cytarabine and VPA in clinically relevant pediatric AML cell lines and diagnostic blasts from children with AML were determined by MTT assays and standard isobologram analyses. The effects of cytarabine and VPA on apoptosis and cell cycle distributions were determined by flow cytometry analysis and caspase enzymatic assays. The effects of the two agents on DNA damage and Bcl-2 family proteins were determined by Western blotting.We showed synergistic antileukemic activities between cytarabine and VPA in four pediatric AML cell lines and nine diagnostic AML blast samples. t(8;21) AML blasts were significantly more sensitive to VPA and showed far greater sensitivities to combined cytarabine and VPA than non-t(8;21) AML cases. Cytarabine and VPA cooperatively induced DNA double-strand breaks, reflected in induction of ?H2AX and apoptosis, accompanied by activation of caspase-9 and caspase-3. Further, VPA induced Bim expression and short hairpin RNA knockdown of Bim resulted in significantly decreased apoptosis induced by cytarabine and by cytarabine plus VPA.Our results establish global synergistic antileukemic activity of combined VPA and cytarabine in pediatric AML and provide compelling evidence to support the use of VPA in the treatment of children with this deadly disease.
Project description:Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is an aggressive malignancy characterized by heterogeneous genetic and epigenetic changes in hematopoietic progenitors that lead to abnormal self-renewal and proliferation. Despite high initial remission rates, prognosis remains poor for most AML patients, especially for those harboring internal tandem duplication (ITD) mutations in the fms-related tyrosine kinase-3 (FLT3). Here, we report that a novel epidithiodiketopiperazine, NT1721, potently decreased the cell viability of FLT3-ITD+ AML cell lines, displaying IC50 values in the low nanomolar range, while leaving normal CD34+ bone marrow cells largely unaffected. The IC50 values for NT1721 were significantly lower than those for clinically used AML drugs (i.e. cytarabine, sorafenib) in all tested AML cell lines regardless of their FLT3 mutation status. Moreover, combinations of NT1721 with sorafenib or cytarabine showed better antileukemic effects than the single agents in vitro. Combining cytarabine with NT1721 also attenuated the cytarabine-induced FLT3 ligand surge that has been linked to resistance to tyrosine kinase inhibitors. Mechanistically, NT1721 depleted DNA methyltransferase 1 (DNMT1) protein levels, leading to the re-expression of silenced tumor suppressor genes and apoptosis induction. NT1721 concomitantly decreased the expression of EZH2 and BMI1, two genes that are associated with the maintenance of leukemic stem/progenitor cells. In a systemic FLT3-ITD+ AML mouse model, treatment with NT1721 reduced tumor burdens by > 95% compared to the control and significantly increased survival times. Taken together, our results suggest that NT1721 may represent a promising novel agent for the treatment of AML.
Project description:Investigate antileukemic activity of artemisinins, artesunate (ART), and dihydroartemisinin (DHA), in combination with cytarabine, a key component of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) chemotherapy using in vitro and in vivo models.Using ten human AML cell lines, we conducted a high-throughput screen to identify antimalarial agents with antileukemic activity. We evaluated effects of ART and DHA on cell viability, cytotoxicity, apoptosis, lysosomal integrity, and combination effects with cytarabine in cell lines and primary patient blasts. In vivo pharmacokinetic studies and efficacy of single-agent ART or combination with cytarabine were evaluated in three xenograft models.ART and DHA had the most potent activity in a panel of AML cell lines, with selectivity toward samples harboring MLL rearrangements and FLT3-ITD mutations. Combination of ART or DHA was synergistic with cytarabine. Single-dose ART (120 mg/kg) produced human equivalent exposures, but multiple dose daily administration required for in vivo efficacy was not tolerated. Combination treatment produced initial regression, but did not prolong survival in vivo.The pharmacology of artemisinins is problematic and should be considered in designing AML treatment strategies with currently available agents. Artemisinins with improved pharmacokinetic properties may offer therapeutic benefit in combination with conventional therapeutic strategies in AML.
Project description:Gemtuzumab ozogamicin (GO), an anti-CD33 immunoconjugate, was combined with high dose cytarabine (HiDAC; cytarabine 3g/m(2) over 3h daily for 5 days) for adults with relapsed or refractory AML. HiDAC plus GO 9mg/m(2) on day 7 and 4.5mg/m(2) on day 14 was not tolerated, but HiDAC followed by GO 9mg/m(2) on day 7 was safe: 12/37 (32%) patients with relapsed AML achieved complete remission. Median overall survival was 8.9 months. No grade 4 hepatic veno-occlusive disease was observed. This regimen merits further study, both in this setting and as a remission consolidation therapy.
Project description:A large proportion of patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) are not fit for intensive and potentially curative therapy due to advanced age or comorbidity. Previous studies have demonstrated that a subset of these patients can benefit from disease-stabilizing therapy based on all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) and valproic acid. Even though complete hematological remission is only achieved for exceptional patients, a relatively large subset of patients respond to this treatment with stabilization of normal peripheral blood cell counts.In this clinical study we investigated the efficiency and safety of combining (i) continuous administration of valproic acid with (ii) intermittent oral ATRA treatment (21.5 mg/m2 twice daily) for 14 days and low-dose cytarabine (10 mg/m2 daily) for 10 days administered subcutaneously. If cytarabine could not control hyperleukocytosis it was replaced by hydroxyurea or 6-mercaptopurin to keep the peripheral blood blast count below 50 × 109/L.The study included 36 AML patients (median age 77 years, range 48 to 90 years) unfit for conventional intensive chemotherapy; 11 patients responded to the treatment according to the myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) response criteria and two of these responders achieved complete hematological remission. The most common response to treatment was increased and stabilized platelet counts. The responder patients had a median survival of 171 days (range 102 to > 574 days) and they could spend most of this time outside hospital, whereas the nonresponders had a median survival of 33 days (range 8 to 149 days). The valproic acid serum levels did not differ between responder and nonresponder patients and the treatment was associated with a decrease in the level of circulating regulatory T cells.Treatment with continuous valproic acid and intermittent ATRA plus low-dose cytarabine has a low frequency of side effects and complete hematological remission is seen for a small minority of patients. However, disease stabilization is seen for a subset of AML patients unfit for conventional intensive chemotherapy.
Project description:Phase II trials found that tegafur-uracil (UFT) is an effective drug in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), while preclinical data suggested that its combination with sorafenib may have a promising activity. Our Phase II randomized trial aimed to evaluate efficacy and tolerability of sorafenib plus UFT vs sorafenib in advanced HCC. Patients with advanced HCC, with no prior systemic therapy, were randomized to receive either UFT at 125 mg/m2 twice daily for 4 out of 5 weeks plus sorafenib at 400 mg twice daily (arm 1) or single agent sorafenib at 400 mg twice daily (arm 2). Primary end point was time to progression (TTP). Between March 2012 and March 2014, 76 eligible patients - out of 143 preplanned - were randomized. The study was terminated early because of futility. This is the final analysis of the study, after a median follow-up of 10.2 months and death of 86% of randomized patients (n=64). Median TTP was 7.5 months and 8.2 months in arms 1 and 2 respectively (HR: 1.07; 95% CI, 0.52-2.22; P=0.855), while the median overall survival was 8.2 months and 10.5 months respectively (HR: 1.58; 95% CI: 0.90-2.76, P=0.112). Nine patients (25%) in the combination arm discontinued treatment because of toxicity vs eight patients (21.1%) in the sorafenib monotherapy arm (P=0.899). In patients with advanced HCC, adding UFT to sorafenib is feasible, but it did not improve efficacy outcome over sorafenib monotherapy.