Alkylpurine-DNA-N-glycosylase confers resistance to temozolomide in xenograft models of glioblastoma multiforme and is associated with poor survival in patients.
ABSTRACT: Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most common and lethal of all gliomas. The current standard of care includes surgery followed by concomitant radiation and chemotherapy with the DNA alkylating agent temozolomide (TMZ). O?-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) repairs the most cytotoxic of lesions generated by TMZ, O?-methylguanine. Methylation of the MGMT promoter in GBM correlates with increased therapeutic sensitivity to alkylating agent therapy. However, several aspects of TMZ sensitivity are not explained by MGMT promoter methylation. Here, we investigated our hypothesis that the base excision repair enzyme alkylpurine-DNA-N-glycosylase (APNG), which repairs the cytotoxic lesions N³-methyladenine and N?-methylguanine, may contribute to TMZ resistance. Silencing of APNG in established and primary TMZ-resistant GBM cell lines endogenously expressing MGMT and APNG attenuated repair of TMZ-induced DNA damage and enhanced apoptosis. Reintroducing expression of APNG in TMZ-sensitive GBM lines conferred resistance to TMZ in vitro and in orthotopic xenograft mouse models. In addition, resistance was enhanced with coexpression of MGMT. Evaluation of APNG protein levels in several clinical datasets demonstrated that in patients, high nuclear APNG expression correlated with poorer overall survival compared with patients lacking APNG expression. Loss of APNG expression in a subset of patients was also associated with increased APNG promoter methylation. Collectively, our data demonstrate that APNG contributes to TMZ resistance in GBM and may be useful in the diagnosis and treatment of the disease.
Project description:Temozolomide (TMZ) is an alkylating agent chemotherapy drug used as a first-line treatment for glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). O6-methyl-guanine DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) repairs DNA damage induced by TMZ; hence, elevated MGMT levels usually correlate with TMZ resistance. MGMT promoter methylation is a key regulatory mechanism for MGMT expression and is important in overcoming TMZ therapy resistance. To date, little is known about how MGMT expression is regulated beyond promoter methylation. In this work, we show an alternative mechanism by which MGMT levels are regulated independent of its promoter methylation status. We found that inhibition of the histone deacetylase HDAC8 by either HDAC8-specific inhibitor PCI34051 or HDAC8 shRNA decreases MGMT levels in GBM cell lines. Furthermore, the proteasome receptor ADRM1 participates in this MGMT regulation by interacting with HDAC8. Interestingly, this interaction is disrupted by TMZ exclusively in TMZ sensitive cells, suggesting that this MGMT regulatory pathway might be inactivated in TMZ resistant cells. Consequently, HDAC8 inhibition in GBM cell lines increases DNA damage and cell cycle arrest and, eventually, decreases cell viability, likely due to the decrease in MGMT protein levels.
Project description:Gliomas are the most frequently occurring primary brain tumor in the central nervous system of adults. Glioblastoma multiformes (GBMs, WHO grade 4) have a dismal prognosis despite the use of the alkylating agent, temozolomide (TMZ), and even low grade gliomas (LGGs, WHO grade 2) eventually transform to malignant secondary GBMs. Although GBM patients benefit from promoter hypermethylation of the O(6)-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) that is the main determinant of resistance to TMZ, recent studies suggested that MGMT promoter methylation is of prognostic as well as predictive significance for the efficacy of TMZ. Glioma-CpG island methylator phenotype (G-CIMP) in the global genome was shown to be a significant predictor of improved survival in patients with GBM. Collectively, we hypothesized that MGMT promoter methylation might reflect global DNA methylation. Additionally in LGGs, the significance of MGMT promoter methylation is still undetermined. In the current study, we aimed to determine the correlation between clinical, genetic, and epigenetic profiles including LINE-1 and different cancer-related genes and the clinical outcome in newly diagnosed 57 LGG and 54 GBM patients. Here, we demonstrated that (1) IDH1/2 mutation is closely correlated with MGMT promoter methylation and 1p/19q codeletion in LGGs, (2) LINE-1 methylation levels in primary and secondary GBMs are lower than those in LGGs and normal brain tissues, (3) LINE-1 methylation is proportional to MGMT promoter methylation in gliomas, and (4) higher LINE-1 methylation is a favorable prognostic factor in primary GBMs, even compared to MGMT promoter methylation. As a global DNA methylation marker, LINE-1 may be a promising marker in gliomas.
Project description:Tumor recurrence in glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is often attributed to acquired resistance to the standard chemotherapeutic agent, temozolomide (TMZ). Promoter methylation of the DNA repair gene MGMT (O6-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase) has been associated with sensitivity to TMZ, whereas increased expression of MGMT has been associated with TMZ resistance. Clinical studies have observed a downward shift in MGMT methylation percentage from primary to recurrent stage tumors; however, the evolutionary processes that drive this shift and more generally the emergence and growth of TMZ-resistant tumor subpopulations are still poorly understood. Here, we develop a mathematical model, parameterized using clinical and experimental data, to investigate the role of MGMT methylation in TMZ resistance during the standard treatment regimen for GBM-surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation. We first found that the observed downward shift in MGMT promoter methylation status between detection and recurrence cannot be explained solely by evolutionary selection. Next, our model suggests that TMZ has an inhibitory effect on maintenance methylation of MGMT after cell division. Finally, incorporating this inhibitory effect, we study the optimal number of TMZ doses per adjuvant cycle for patients with GBM with high and low levels of MGMT methylation at diagnosis.
Project description:Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is one of the most malignant human intracranial tumors. Temozolomide (TMZ) is the primary alkylating agent for GBM patients. However, many GBM patients are resistant to TMZ. Therefore, patients with GBM urgently need more effective therapeutic options. 20(S)-ginsenoside-Rg3 (20(S)-Rg3) is a natural chemical with anti-tumor effects, but at present there is little understanding of its functional mechanism. Several research reports have demonstrated that O6 -methylguanine DNA-methyltransferase (MGMT) repairs damaged DNA and contributes to TMZ resistance in gliomas. In addition, recent studies have shown that MGMT gene expression could be regulated by the Wnt/?-catenin pathway. However, whether 20(S)-Rg3 inhibits MGMT expression and augments chemosensitivity to Temozolomide (TMZ) in glioma cells remains unclear. In this study, we explored the modulating effects of 20(S)-Rg3 on MGMT. We used glioma cell lines, primary cell strain (including T98G, U118 and GBM-XX; all of them are MGMT-positive glioma cell lines) and xenograft glioma models to examine whether 20(S)-Rg3 increased the sensitivity to TMZ and to reveal the underlying mechanisms. We found that the MGMT expression was effectively downregulated by 20(S)-Rg3 via the Wnt/?-catenin pathway in glioma cell lines, and TMZ resistance was significantly reversed by 20(S)-Rg3. Meanwhile, 20(S)-Rg3 shows no obvious cytotoxicity at its effective dose and is well tolerated in vivo. In addition, we found that 20(S)-Rg3 significantly restrains the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) progression of glioma cells. Taken together, these results indicate that 20(S)-Rg3 may be a novel agent to use in treatment of GBM, especially in TMZ-resistant GBM with high MGMT expression.
Project description:Temozolomide (TMZ) is an oral alkylating agent used for the treatment of glioblastoma and is now becoming a chemotherapeutic option in patients diagnosed with high-risk low-grade gliomas. The O-6-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) is responsible for the direct repair of the main TMZ-induced toxic DNA adduct, the O6-Methylguanine lesion. MGMT promoter hypermethylation is currently the only known biomarker for TMZ response in glioblastoma patients. Here we show that a subset of recurrent gliomas carries MGMT genomic rearrangements that lead to MGMT overexpression, independently from changes in its promoter methylation. By leveraging the CRISPR/Cas9 technology we generated some of these MGMT rearrangements in glioma cells and demonstrated that the MGMT genomic rearrangements contribute to TMZ resistance both in vitro and in vivo. Lastly, we showed that such fusions can be detected in tumor-derived exosomes and could potentially represent an early detection marker of tumor recurrence in a subset of patients treated with TMZ.
Project description:Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is one of the most deadly types of cancer. To date, the best clinical approach for treatment is based on administration of temozolomide (TMZ) in combination with radiotherapy. Much evidence suggests that the intracellular level of the alkylating enzyme O(6)-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) impacts response to TMZ in GBM patients. MGMT expression is regulated by the methylation of its promoter. However, evidence indicates that this is not the only regulatory mechanism present. Here, we describe a hitherto unknown microRNA-mediated mechanism of MGMT expression regulation. We show that miR-221 and miR-222 are upregulated in GMB patients and that these paralogues target MGMT mRNA, inducing greater TMZ-mediated cell death. However, miR-221/miR-222 also increase DNA damage and, thus, chromosomal rearrangements. Indeed, miR-221 overexpression in glioma cells led to an increase in markers of DNA damage, an effect rescued by re-expression of MGMT. Thus, chronic miR-221/222-mediated MGMT downregulation may render cells unable to repair genetic damage. This, associated also to miR-221/222 oncogenic potential, may poor GBM prognosis.
Project description:Inter- and intratumoral heterogeneity is a hallmark of glioblastoma (GBM) that facilitates recurrence, treatment resistance, and worse prognosis. O6-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) promoter methylation is a significant prognostic marker for Temozolomide (TMZ) resistance in GBM patients. YKL-40 is a molecular marker for the mesenchymal subtype of GBMs and is responsible for TMZ resistance. However, underlying mechanisms by which MGMT epigenetics impacts patient outcomes and the function of YKL-40 are not fully determined. Herein, we performed in vitro and in vivo experiments, six human IDH1/2 wild-type glioblastoma stem-like cells (GSCs) were established and studied to further determine a potential interaction of YKL-40 and MGMT promoter methylation. We demonstrated that YKL-40 functioned differently in human IDH1/2 wild-type GSCs. In MGMT promoter-methylated (MGMT-m) GSCs, it acted as a tumor suppressor gene. On the other hand, in MGMT promoter-unmethylated (MGMT-um) GSCs, it promoted tumorigenesis. Notably, the reason that YKL-40 played different roles in GSCs could not be interpreted by the molecular classification of each GSCs, but is a function of MGMT promoter methylation status and involves the RAS-MEK-ERK pathway. YKL-40 mediated TMZ sensitivity by activating DNA damage responses (DDRs) in MGMT-m GSCs, and it mediated resistance to TMZ by inhibiting DDRs in MGMT-um GSCs. Our report demonstrated that MGMT promoter methylation status might influence a gene's function in human cancer. Moreover, our data also highlight the point that gene function should be investigated not only according to the molecular tumor classification, but also the epigenetic signature.
Project description:Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most malignant glioma, with a median overall survival (OS) of 14-16 months. Temozolomide (TMZ) is the first-line chemotherapy drug for glioma, but whether TMZ should be withheld from patients with GBMs that lack O6-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) promoter methylation is still under debate. DNA methylation profiling holds great promise for further stratifying the responses of MGMT promoter unmethylated GBMs to TMZ. In this study, we studied 147 TMZ-treated MGMT promoter unmethylated GBM, whose methylation information was obtained from the HumanMethylation27 (HM-27K) BeadChips (n = 107) and the HumanMethylation450 (HM-450K) BeadChips (n = 40) for training and validation, respectively. In the training set, we performed univariate Cox regression and identified that 3,565 CpGs were significantly associated with the OS of the TMZ-treated MGMT promoter unmethylated GBMs. Functional analysis indicated that the genes corresponding to these CpGs were enriched in the biological processes or pathways of mitochondrial translation, cell cycle, and DNA repair. Based on these CpGs, we developed a 31-CpGs methylation signature utilizing the least absolute shrinkage and selection operator (LASSO) Cox regression algorithm. In both training and validation datasets, the signature identified the TMZ-sensitive GBMs in the MGMT promoter unmethylated GBMs, and only the patients in the low-risk group appear to benefit from the TMZ treatment. Furthermore, these identified TMZ-sensitive MGMT promoter unmethylated GBMs have a similar OS when compared with the MGMT promoter methylated GBMs after TMZ treatment in both two datasets. Multivariate Cox regression demonstrated the independent prognostic value of the signature in TMZ-treated MGMT promoter unmethylated GBMs. Moreover, we also noticed that the hallmark of epithelial-mesenchymal transition, ECM related biological processes and pathways were highly enriched in the MGMT unmethylated GBMs with the high-risk score, indicating that enhanced ECM activities could be involved in the TMZ-resistance of GBM. In conclusion, our findings promote our understanding of the roles of DNA methylation in MGMT umethylated GBMs and offer a very promising TMZ-sensitivity predictive signature for these GBMs that could be tested prospectively.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most common and most aggressive primary malignant brain tumor. Standard-of-care treatment involves maximal surgical resection of the tumor followed by radiation and chemotherapy (temozolomide [TMZ]). The 5-year survival rate of patients with GBM is <10%, a colossal failure that has been partially attributed to intrinsic and/or acquired resistance to TMZ through O6-methylguanine DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) promoter methylation status in the tumor.<h4>Methods</h4>A drug screening aimed at evaluating the potential recycling and repurposing of known drugs was conducted in TMZ-resistant GBM cell lines and primary cultures of newly diagnosed GBM with different MGMT promoter methylation status, phenotypic/genotypic background and subtype, and validated with sphere formation, cell migration assays, and quantitative invasive orthotopic in vivo models.<h4>Results</h4>We identified hydroxyurea (HU) to synergize with TMZ in GBM cells in culture and in vivo, irrespective of MGMT promoter methylation status, subtype, and/or stemness. HU acts specifically on the S-phase of the cell cycle by inhibiting the M2 unit of enzyme ribonucleotide reductase. Knockdown of this enzyme using RNA interference and other known chemical inhibitors exerted a similar effect to HU in combination with TMZ both in culture and in vivo.<h4>Conclusions</h4>We demonstrate preclinical efficacy of repurposing hydroxyurea in combination with TMZ for adjuvant GBM therapy. This combination benefit is of direct clinical interest given the extensive use of TMZ and the associated problems with TMZ-related resistance and treatment failure.
Project description:Temozolomide (TMZ) increases the overall survival of patients with glioblastoma (GBM), but its role in the clinical management of diffuse low-grade gliomas (LGG) is still being defined. DNA hypermethylation of the O (6) -methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) promoter is associated with an improved response to TMZ treatment, while inactivation of the DNA mismatch repair (MMR) pathway is associated with therapeutic resistance and TMZ-induced mutagenesis. We previously demonstrated that TMZ treatment of LGG induces driver mutations in the RB and AKT-mTOR pathways, which may drive malignant progression to secondary GBM. To better understand the mechanisms underlying TMZ-induced mutagenesis and malignant progression, we explored the evolution of MGMT methylation and genetic alterations affecting MMR genes in a cohort of 34 treatment-naïve LGGs and their recurrences. Recurrences with TMZ-associated hypermutation had increased MGMT methylation compared to their untreated initial tumors and higher overall MGMT methylation compared to TMZ-treated non-hypermutated recurrences. A TMZ-associated mutation in one or more MMR genes was observed in five out of six TMZ-treated hypermutated recurrences. In two cases, pre-existing heterozygous deletions encompassing MGMT, or an MMR gene, were followed by TMZ-associated mutations in one of the genes of interest. These results suggest that tumor cells with methylated MGMT may undergo positive selection during TMZ treatment in the context of MMR deficiency.