MLN8054 and Alisertib (MLN8237): Discovery of Selective Oral Aurora A Inhibitors.
ABSTRACT: The Aurora kinases are essential for cell mitosis, and the dysregulation of Aurora A and B have been linked to the etiology of human cancers. Investigational agents MLN8054 (8) and alisertib (MLN8237, 10) have been identified as high affinity, selective, orally bioavailable inhibitors of Aurora A that have advanced into human clinical trials. Alisertib (10) is currently being evaluated in multiple Phase II and III clinical trials in hematological malignancies and solid tumors.
Project description:Alisertib (MLN8237) is an investigational, oral, selective, Aurora A kinase (AAK) inhibitor. In this phase 2 trial, 57 patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) or high-grade myelodysplastic syndrome received alisertib 50 mg BID for 7 days in 21-day cycles. Responses in 6/35 AML patients (17% response rate with an additional 49% stable disease, 34% transfusion independence) included 1 complete response lasting >1 year. No responses were observed in MDS patients. Adverse events >30% included diarrhea, fatigue, nausea, febrile neutropenia, and stomatitis. Results suggest modest activity in AML, supporting further research to better understand how AAK inhibition may induce leukemic cell senescence.
Project description:This phase 1b study evaluated an enteric-coated tablet (ECT) formulation of the investigational Aurora A kinase inhibitor, alisertib (MLN8237).Patients with advanced, non-hematologic malignancies received oral alisertib ECT for 7 d BID followed by 14 d treatment-free (21-day cycles; 3 + 3 dose escalation schema). Objectives were to assess safety, pharmacokinetics, and antitumor activity, and to define a recommended phase 2 dose (RP2D) of alisertib.24 patients were treated. Median age was 57 years. Patients received a median of 2 cycles (range 1-12). The RP2D was determined as 50 mg BID for 7 d (21-day cycles). A cycle 1 dose-limiting toxicity of grade 4 febrile neutropenia was observed in 1 of 13 patients at RP2D. The most common drug-related adverse event (AE) was neutropenia (50%). At doses ? 40 mg BID, 7 patients had drug-related AEs that were serious but largely reversible/manageable by dose reduction and supportive care, including 3 with febrile neutropenia. Pharmacokinetic data were available in 24 patients. Following administration of alisertib ECT, the plasma peak concentration of alisertib was achieved at ~3 h; systemic exposure increased with increasing dose over 10-60 mg BID. Mean t½ was ~21 h following multiple dosing. Renal clearance was negligible. Nine patients achieved stable disease (3.98*, 5.59, 1.28*, 2.56, 5.45*, 3.48, 3.15, 8.31, and 6.93* months; *censored).Alisertib ECT was generally well tolerated in adults with advanced, non-hematologic malignancies. The RP2D is 50 mg BID for 7 d and is being evaluated in ongoing phase 2 studies.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>The Aurora kinases are a family of serine/threonine kinases comprised of Aurora A, B, and C which execute critical steps in mitotic and meiotic progression. Alisertib (MLN8237) is an investigational Aurora A selective inhibitor that has demonstrated activity against a wide variety of tumor types in vitro and in vivo, including CRC.<h4>Results</h4>CRC cell lines demonstrated varying sensitivity to alisertib with IC50 values ranging from 0.06 to > 5 umol/L. Following exposure to alisertib we observed a decrease in pAurora A, B and C in four CRC cell lines. We also observed an increase in p53 and p21 in a sensitive p53 wildtype cell line in contrast to the p53 mutant cell line or the resistant cell lines. The addition of alisertib to standard CRC treatments demonstrated improvement over single agent arms; however, the benefit was largely less than additive, but not antagonistic.<h4>Methods</h4>Forty-seven CRC cell lines were exposed to alisertib and IC50s were calculated. Twenty-one PDX models were treated with alisertib and the Tumor Growth Inhibition Index was assessed. Additionally, 5 KRAS wildtype and mutant PDX models were treated with alisertib as single agent or in combination with cetuximab or irinotecan, respectively.<h4>Conclusion</h4>Alisertib demonstrated anti-proliferative effects against CRC cell lines and PDX models. Our data suggest that the addition of alisertib to standard therapies in colorectal cancer if pursued clinically, will require further investigation of patient selection strategies and these combinations may facilitate future clinical studies.
Project description:Alisertib (MLN8237) is a selective small molecule inhibitor of Aurora A kinase that is being developed in multiple cancer indications as a single agent and in combination with other therapies. A significant amount of research has elucidated a role for Aurora A in orchestrating numerous activities of cells transiting through mitosis and has begun to shed light on potential non-mitotic roles for Aurora A as well. These biological insights laid the foundation for multiple clinical trials evaluating the antitumor activity of alisertib in both solid cancers and heme-lymphatic malignancies. Several key facets of Aurora A biology as well as empirical data collected in experimental systems and early clinical trials have directed the development of alisertib toward certain cancer types, including neuroblastoma, small cell lung cancer, neuroendocrine prostate cancer, atypical teratoid/rhabdoid tumors, and breast cancer among others. In addition, these scientific insights provided the rationale for combining alisertib with other therapies, including microtubule perturbing agents, such as taxanes, EGFR inhibitors, hormonal therapies, platinums, and HDAC inhibitors among others. Here, we link the key aspects of the current clinical development of alisertib to the originating scientific rationale and provide an overview of the alisertib clinical experience to date.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Alisertib (MLN8237) is an investigational, oral, selective Aurora A kinase inhibitor. Aurora A contains two functional single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs; codon 31 [F/I] and codon 57 [V/I]) that lead to functional changes. This study investigated the prognostic and predictive significance of these SNPs. METHODS:This study evaluated associations between Aurora A SNPs and overall survival (OS) in The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) database. The Aurora A SNPs were also evaluated as predictive biomarkers for clinical outcomes to alisertib in two phase 2 studies (NCT01045421 and NCT01091428). Aurora A SNP genotyping was obtained from 85 patients with advanced solid tumors receiving single-agent alisertib and 122 patients with advanced recurrent ovarian cancer treated with alisertib plus weekly paclitaxel (n=62) or paclitaxel alone (n=60). Whole blood was collected prior to treatment and genotypes were analyzed by PCR. FINDINGS:TCGA data suggested prognostic significance for codon 57 SNP; solid tumor patients with VV and VI alleles had significantly reduced OS versus those with II alleles (HR 1.9 [VI] and 1.8 [VV]; p<0.0001). In NCT01045421, patients carrying the VV alleles at codon 57 (n=53, 62%) had significantly longer progression-free survival (PFS) than patients carrying IV or II alleles (n=32, 38%; HR 0.5; p=0.0195). In NCT01091428, patients with the VV alleles at codon 57 who received alisertib plus paclitaxel (n=47, 39%) had a trend towards improved PFS (7.5months) vs paclitaxel alone (n=32, 26%; 3.8months; HR 0.618; p=0.0593). In the paclitaxel alone arm, patients with the VV alleles had reduced PFS vs modified intent-to-treat (mITT) patients (3.8 vs 5.1months), consistent with the TCGA study identifying the VV alleles as a poor prognostic biomarker. No significant associations were identified for codon 31 SNP from the same data set. INTERPRETATION:These findings suggest that Aurora A SNP at codon 57 may predict disease outcome and response to alisertib in patients with solid tumors. Further investigation is warranted.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Aurora kinase A (AURKA) is commonly overexpressed in sarcoma. The inhibition of AURKA by shRNA or by a specific AURKA inhibitor blocks in vitro proliferation of multiple sarcoma subtypes. MLN8237 (alisertib) is a novel oral adenosine triphosphate-competitive AURKA inhibitor. PATIENTS AND METHODS:This Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program-sponsored phase II study of alisertib was conducted through the Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology (A091102). Patients were enrolled into histology-defined cohorts: (i) liposarcoma, (ii) leiomyosarcoma, (iii) undifferentiated sarcoma, (iv) malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor, or (v) other. Treatment was alisertib 50 mg PO b.i.d. d1-d7 every 21 days. The primary end point was response rate; progression-free survival (PFS) was secondary. One response in the first 9 patients expanded enrollment in a cohort to 24 using a Simon two-stage design. RESULTS:Seventy-two patients were enrolled at 24 sites [12 LPS, 10 LMS, 11 US, 10 malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor (MPNST), 29 Other]. The median age was 55 years; 54% were male; 58%/38%/4% were ECOG PS 0/1/2. One PR expanded enrollment to the second stage in the other sarcoma cohort. The histology-specific cohorts ceased at the first stage. There were two confirmed PRs in the other cohort (both angiosarcoma) and one unconfirmed PR in dedifferentiated chondrosarcoma. Twelve-week PFS was 73% (LPS), 44% (LMS), 36% (US), 60% (MPNST), and 38% (Other). Grade 3-4 adverse events: oral mucositis (12%), anemia (14%), platelet count decreased (14%), leukopenia (22%), and neutropenia (42%). CONCLUSIONS:Alisertib was well tolerated. Occasional responses, yet prolonged stable disease, were observed. Although failing to meet the primary RR end point, PFS was promising. TRIAL REGISTRATION ID:NCT01653028.
Project description:<h4>Purpose</h4>Amplification or over-expression of the mitotic Aurora A kinase (AAK) has been reported in several heme-lymphatic malignancies. MLN8237 (alisertib) is a novel inhibitor of AAK that is being developed for the treatment of advanced malignancies. The objectives of this phase I study were to establish the safety, tolerability, and pharmacokinetic profiles of escalating doses of MLN8237 in patients with relapsed or refractory heme-lymphatic malignancies.<h4>Methods</h4>Sequential cohorts of patients received MLN8237 orally as either a powder-in-capsule (PIC) or enteric-coated tablet (ECT) formulation. Patients received MLN8237 PIC 25-90 mg for 14 or 21 consecutive days plus 14 or 7 days' rest, respectively, or MLN8237 ECT, at a starting dose of 40 mg/day once-daily (QD) for 14 days plus 14 days' rest, all in 28-day cycles. Subsequent cohorts received MLN8237 ECT 30-50 mg twice-daily (BID) for 7 days plus 14 days' rest in 21-day cycles.<h4>Results</h4>Fifty-eight patients were enrolled (PIC n = 28, ECT n = 30). The most frequent grade ≥3 drug-related toxicities were neutropenia (45 %), thrombocytopenia (28 %), anemia (19 %), and leukopenia (19 %). The maximum tolerated dose on the ECT 7-day schedule was 50 mg BID. The terminal half-life of MLN8237 was approximately 19 h. Six (13 %) patients achieved partial responses and 13 (28 %) stable disease.<h4>Conclusion</h4>The recommended phase II dose of MLN8237 ECT is 50 mg BID for 7 days in 21-day cycles, which is currently being evaluated as a single agent in phase II/III trials in patients with peripheral T-cell lymphoma.
Project description:Aurora-A is a mitotic kinase that regulates mitotic spindle formation and segregation. In multiple myeloma (MM), high Aurora-A gene expression has been correlated with centrosome amplification and proliferation; thus, inhibition of Aurora-A in MM may prove to be therapeutically beneficial. Here we assess the in vitro and in vivo anti-MM activity of MLN8237, a small-molecule Aurora-A kinase inhibitor. Treatment of cultured MM cells with MLN8237 results in mitotic spindle abnormalities, mitotic accumulation, as well as inhibition of cell proliferation through apoptosis and senescence. In addition, MLN8237 up-regulates p53 and tumor suppressor genes p21 and p27. Combining MLN8237 with dexamethasone, doxorubicin, or bortezomib induces synergistic/additive anti-MM activity in vitro. In vivo anti-MM activity of MLN8237 was confirmed using a xenograft-murine model of human-MM. Tumor burden was significantly reduced (P = .007) and overall survival was significantly increased (P < .005) in animals treated with 30 mg/kg MLN8237 for 21 days. Induction of apoptosis and cell death by MLN8237 were confirmed in tumor cells excised from treated animals by TdT-mediated dUTP nick end labeling assay. MLN8237 is currently in phase 1 and phase 2 clinical trials in patients with advanced malignancies, and our preclinical results suggest that MLN8237 may be a promising novel targeted therapy in MM.
Project description:Auroras (A and B) are oncogenic serine/threonine kinases that play key roles in the mitotic phase of the eukaryotic cell cycle. Analysis of the leukemia lymphoma molecular profiling project (LLMPP) database indicates Aurora over-expression correlates with poor prognosis. A tissue microarray (TMA) composed of 20 paired mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) patients demonstrated >75% of patients had high levels Aurora expression. Aurora A and B were also found elevated in 13 aggressive B-NHL cell lines. MLN8237, an Aurora inhibitor induced G2/M arrest with polyploidy and abrogated Aurora A and histone-H3 phosphorylation. MLN8237 inhibited aggressive B-NHL cell proliferation at an IC(50) of 10-50 nM and induced apoptosis in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Low dose combinations of MLN8237+docetaxel enhanced apoptosis by ~3-4-fold in cell culture compared to single agents respectively. A mouse xenograft model of MCL demonstrated that MLN8237 (10 or 30 mg/kg) or docetaxel (10mg/kg) alone had modest anti-tumor activity. However, MLN8237 plus docetaxel demonstrated a statistically significant tumor growth inhibition and enhanced survival compared to single agent therapy. Together, our results suggest that MLN8237 plus docetaxel may represent a novel therapeutic strategy that could be evaluated in early phase trials in relapsed/refractory aggressive B-cell NHL.
Project description:Inhibition of Aurora kinase activity by small molecules is being actively investigated as a potential anti-cancer strategy. A successful therapeutic use of Aurora inhibitors relies on a comprehensive understanding of the effects of inactivating Aurora kinases on cell division, a challenging aim given the pleiotropic roles of those kinases during mitosis. Here we have used the Aurora-A inhibitor MLN8237, currently under phase-I/III clinical trials, in dose-response assays in U2OS human cancer cells synchronously proceeding towards mitosis. By following the behaviour and fate of single Aurora-inhibited cells in mitosis by live microscopy, we show that MLN8237 treatment affects multiple processes that are differentially sensitive to the loss of Aurora-A function. A role of Aurora-A in controlling the orientation of cell division emerges. MLN8237 treatment, even in high doses, fails to induce efficient elimination of dividing cells, or of their progeny, while inducing significant aneuploidy in daughter cells. The results of single-cell analyses show a complex cellular response to MLN8237 and evidence that its effects are strongly dose-dependent: these issues deserve consideration in the light of the design of strategies to kill cancer cells via inhibition of Aurora kinases.