Comprehensive Two- and Three-Dimensional RNAi Screening Identifies PI3K Inhibition as a Complement to MEK Inhibitor AS703026 for Combination Treatment of Triple-Negative Breast Cancer.
ABSTRACT: Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) is a major cause of death among breast cancer patients that results from intrinsic and acquired resistance to systemic chemotherapies. To identify novel targets for effective treatment of TNBC through combination strategies with MEK inhibitor (AS703026), we used a novel method of combining high-throughput two- and three-dimensional (2D and 3D) RNAi screening. TNBC cells were transfected with a kinome siRNA library comprising siRNA targeting 790 kinases under both 2D and 3D culture conditions with or without AS703026. Molecule activity predictor analysis revealed the PI3K pathway as the major target pathway in our RNAi combination studies in TNBC. We found that PI3K inhibitor SAR245409 (also called XL765) combined with AS703026 synergistically inhibited proliferation compared with either drug alone (P < 0.001). Reduced in vitro colony formation (P < 0.001) and migration and invasion ability were also observed with the combination treatment (P<0.01). Our data suggest that SAR245409 combined with AS703026 may be effective in patients with TNBC. We conclude that a novel powerful high-throughput RNAi assays were able to identify anti-cancer drugs as single or combinational agents. Integrated and multi-system RNAi screening methods can complement difference between in vitro and in vivo culture conditions, and enriches targets that are close to the in vivo condition.
Project description:This phase I study aimed to evaluate safety, maximum tolerated dose, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and preliminary efficacy of voxtalisib (SAR245409, XL765), a pan-class I phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) and mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) inhibitor, in combination with temozolomide (TMZ), with or without radiation therapy (RT), in patients with high-grade glioma.Patients received voxtalisib 30-90 mg once daily (q.d.) or 20-50 mg twice daily (b.i.d.), in combination with 200 mg/m(2) TMZ (n = 49), or voxtalisib 20 mg q.d. with 75 mg/m(2) TMZ and RT (n = 5). A standard 3 + 3 dose-escalation design was used to determine the maximum tolerated dose. Patients were evaluated for adverse events (AEs), plasma pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamic effects in skin biopsies, and tumor response.The maximum tolerated doses were 90 mg q.d. and 40 mg b.i.d. for voxtalisib in combination with TMZ. The most frequently reported treatment-related AEs were nausea (48%), fatigue (43%), thrombocytopenia (26%), and diarrhea (24%). The most frequently reported treatment-related grade ?3 AEs were lymphopenia (13%), thrombocytopenia, and decreased platelet count (9% each). Pharmacokinetic parameters were similar to previous studies with voxtalisib monotherapy. Moderate inhibition of PI3K signaling was observed in skin biopsies. Best response was partial response in 4% of evaluable patients, with stable disease observed in 68%.Voxtalisib in combination with TMZ with or without RT in patients with high-grade gliomas demonstrated a favorable safety profile and a moderate level of PI3K/mTOR pathway inhibition.
Project description:Due to its molecular heterogeneity and infiltrative nature, glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is notoriously resistant to traditional and experimental therapeutics. To overcome these hurdles, targeted agents have been combined with conventional therapy. We evaluated the preclinical potential of a novel, orally bioavailable PI3K/mTOR dual inhibitor (XL765) in in vitro and in vivo studies. In vivo serially passaged human GBM xenografts that are more genetically stable than GBM cell lines in culture were used for all experiments. Biochemical downstream changes were evaluated by immunoblot and cytotoxicity by colorimetric ATP-based assay. For in vivo experiments, human xenograft GBM 39 grown intracranially in nude mice was altered to express luciferase to monitor tumor burden by optical imaging. XL765 resulted in concentration-dependent decreases in cell viability in vitro. Cytotoxic doses resulted in specific inhibition of PI3K signaling. Combining XL765 with temozolomide (TMZ) resulted in additive toxicity in 4 of 5 xenografts. In vivo, XL765 administered by oral gavage resulted in greater than 12-fold reduction in median tumor bioluminescence compared with control (Mann-Whitney test p = 0.001) and improvement in median survival (logrank p = 0.05). TMZ alone showed a 30-fold decrease in median bioluminescence, but the combination XL765 + TMZ yielded a 140-fold reduction in median bioluminescence (Mann-Whitney test p = 0.05) with a trend toward improvement in median survival (logrank p = 0.09) compared with TMZ alone. XL765 shows activity as monotherapy and in combination with conventional therapeutics in a range of genetically diverse GBM xenografts.
Project description:The expression of the immunoregulatory protein B7-H4 has been reported in many types of cancer, including breast cancer. However, its role in triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC), especially its correlation with patients' prognosis and chemoresistance remains unclear.The expression of B7-H4 in TNBC tissues and cell lines were measured with Real-Time PCR and western blotting. 65 cases of TNBC tissue samples and adjacent non-tumor tissue samples were analyzed by immunochemistry to demonstrate the correlation between the B7-H4 expression and clinicopathological characteristics. In vitro studies assessed mAb MIH43 alone and in combination with transfecting B7-H4 siRNA on the growth of chemosensitive and chemoresistant TNBC cell lines by CCK-8 and apoptotic enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).B7-H4 expression was detected positive in 59 of 65 (90.8%) different stage TNBC patients, especially in the samples of recurrence TNBC patients after receiving neoadjuvant chemotherapy treatment. Survival curves showed that patients with B7-H4 overexpression had significantly shorter survival and recurrence time than those with low B7-H4 expression (p?<?0.005). Univariate and multivariate COX regression analysis demonstrated that B7-H4 was an independent predictor for advanced tumor stage. The monoclonal antibody of B7-H4 has the potential anti-proliferative effects on inhibiting the chemoresistant TNBC cell lines and increasing the sensitivity of TNBC cell lines to doxorubicin, paclitaxel or carboplatin. RNAi-mediated silencing of B7-H4 in TNBC cells enhanced drug-induced apoptosis via inhibiting PTEN/PI3K/AKT pathway, whereas reexpression of B7-H4 in B7-H4 knockdown and low B7-H4 expressing cells increased the phosphorylation of PI3K and AKT along with restoration of PETN expression.Our data show that B7-H4 is a biomarker indicative of a poor prognosis in TNBC patients and at least partially downregulated in chemoresistance via PTEN/PI3K/AKT pathway. Targeting B7-H4 might provide an attractive therapeutic approach specifically for TNBC patients.
Project description:The PI3K-AKT-mTOR pathway is often a commonly disrupted pathway in human cancer and, therefore, it is widely exploited for cancer therapy. The inhibitors for the important proteins of the pathway including PI3K and mTOR have been increasingly designed. The dual inhibitors targeting PI3K and mTOR both have proven to be more effective than those targeting single protein only. An orally-active compound XL765 is well established as PI3K/mTOR dual inhibitor and have shown in vitro and in vivo anticancer activity against a variety of cancer types and is undergoing clinical trials. The present study explored the exact binding pose and the the interactive forces holding XL765 within the active sites of PI3K? and mTOR using molecular docking analyses. The XL765 interacting residues of both the proteins were delineated and the degree of participation in binding was estimated by various methods. In the process, among the interacting residues of PI3K?, the Lys-890 and the Met-953 were recognized as the key residues involved in XL765 binding. While, in mTOR case, the Trp-2239 was recognized as the key residue playing role in the XL765 binding. In order to explore the better inhibitors, the study also generated combinatorial chemical library by modifying the scaffold considered from XL765. The virtual screening of the generated compound library led to identification of six novel promising compounds proposed as PI3K/mTOR dual inhibitors. Thus, the present work will through light on the drug inhibitory mechanism of XL765 for PI3K and mTOR, and will also assist in designing novel efficacious drug candidates.
Project description:<h4>Introduction</h4>Paclitaxel is a widely used drug in the treatment of patients with locally advanced and metastatic breast cancer. However, only a small portion of patients have a complete response to paclitaxel-based chemotherapy, and many patients are resistant. Strategies that increase sensitivity and limit resistance to paclitaxel would be of clinical use, especially for patients with triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC).<h4>Methods</h4>We generated a gene set from overlay of the druggable genome and a collection of genomically deregulated gene transcripts in breast cancer. We used loss-of-function RNA interference (RNAi) to identify gene products in this set that, when targeted, increase paclitaxel sensitivity. Pharmacological agents that targeted the top scoring hits/genes from our RNAi screens were used in combination with paclitaxel, and the effects on the growth of various breast cancer cell lines were determined.<h4>Results</h4>RNAi screens performed herein were validated by identification of genes in pathways that, when previously targeted, enhanced paclitaxel sensitivity in the pre-clinical and clinical settings. When chemical inhibitors, CCT007093 and mithramycin, against two top hits in our screen, PPMID and SP1, respectively, were used in combination with paclitaxel, we observed synergistic growth inhibition in both 2D and 3D breast cancer cell cultures. The transforming growth factor beta (TGFbeta) receptor inhibitor, LY2109761, that targets the signaling pathway of another top scoring hit, TGFbeta1, was synergistic with paclitaxel when used in combination on select breast cancer cell lines grown in 3D culture. We also determined the relative paclitaxel sensitivity of 22 TNBC cell lines and identified 18 drug-sensitive and four drug-resistant cell lines. Of significance, we found that both CCT007093 and mithramycin, when used in combination with paclitaxel, resulted in synergistic inhibition of the four paclitaxel-resistant TNBC cell lines.<h4>Conclusions</h4>RNAi screening can identify druggable targets and novel drug combinations that can sensitize breast cancer cells to paclitaxel. This genomic-based approach can be applied to a multitude of tumor-derived cell lines and drug treatments to generate requisite pre-clinical data for new drug combination therapies to pursue in clinical investigations.
Project description:The aim of this study was to clarify the synergistic effects of dual inhibition of the PI3K/mTOR and MAPK pathways in ovarian mucinous carcinoma (OMC) cells, using fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) imaging. We exposed 6 OMC cell lines to a PI3K/mTOR inhibitor (voxtalisib, SAR245409) and/or a MEK inhibitor (pimasertib), and evaluated synergistic effects using the Chou-Talalay method. Then, S6K (PI3K pathway) and ERK (MAPK pathway) kinase activities, and their individual proliferative or cytotoxic effects were calculated by time-lapse FRET imaging. In combination with SAR245409, pimasertib (30 nM) synergistically inhibited cell growth (combination indexes: 0.03-0.5) and induced apoptosis in all 6 OMC cell lines. FRET-imaging results demonstrated that ERK inhibition induced both anti-proliferation and apoptosis in a dose-dependent manner in both MCAS and OAW42 cells. However, S6K inhibition suppressed proliferation in a threshold manner in both cell lines, although apoptosis was only induced in OAW42 cells. These results demonstrated that combined PI3K/mTOR and MEK inhibition exhibited synergistic antitumor effects in OMC cells and that FRET imaging is useful for analyzing kinase activities in live cells and elucidating their cytostatic and cytotoxic effects.
Project description:There is a critical need for efficacious therapeutic strategies to improve the outcome of patients afflicted by malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors (MPNST). Multiple lines of evidence suggest a role for deregulated phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K)/mTOR signaling in MPNST, making this axis an attractive target for therapeutic manipulation. On the basis of previous observations obtained from in vitro experimentation, here we aimed to assess the effects of PI3K/mTOR blockade on MPNST growth in vivo. The anti-MPNST impact of XL765, a dual PI3K/mTOR inhibitor currently being evaluated in human cancer clinical trials, was tested in two human MPNST xenograft models (STS26T and MPNST724) and an experimental model of pulmonary metastasis (STS26T). XL765 abrogated human MPNST local and metastatic growth in severe combined immunodeficient mice. Notably, this therapeutic approach failed to induce apoptosis in MPNST cells but rather resulted in marked productive autophagy. Importantly, genetic and pharmacologic autophagy blockade reversed apoptotic resistance and resulted in significant PI3K/mTOR inhibition-induced MPNST cell death. The addition of the autophagy inhibitor, chloroquine, to the therapeutic regimen of MPNST xenografts after pretreatment with XL765 resulted in superior antitumor effects as compared with either agent alone. Together, preclinical studies described here expand our previous findings and suggest that PI3K/mTOR inhibition alone and (most importantly) in combination with autophagy blockade may comprise a novel and efficacious therapy for patients harboring MPNST.
Project description:70-90% of low-grade gliomas and secondary glioblastomas are characterized by mutations in isocitrate dehydrogenase 1 (IDHmut). IDHmut produces the oncometabolite 2-hydroxyglutarate (2HG), which drives tumorigenesis in these tumors. The phosphoinositide-3-kinase (PI3K)/mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway represents an attractive therapeutic target for IDHmut gliomas, but noninvasive indicators of drug target modulation are lacking. The goal of this study was therefore to identify magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS)-detectable metabolic biomarkers associated with IDHmut glioma response to the dual PI3K/(mTOR) inhibitor XL765. 1H-MRS of two cell lines genetically modified to express IDHmut showed that XL765 induced a significant reduction in several intracellular metabolites including 2HG. Importantly, examination of an orthotopic IDHmut tumor model showed that enhanced animal survival following XL765 treatment was associated with a significant in vivo 1H-MRS detectable reduction in 2HG but not with significant inhibition in tumor growth. Further validation is required, but our results indicate that 2HG could serve as a potential noninvasive MRS-detectable metabolic biomarker of IDHmut glioma response to PI3K/mTOR inhibition.
Project description:UNLABELLED:RNAi is a powerful tool for target identification and can lead to novel therapies for pharmacologically intractable targets such as KRAS. RNAi therapy must combine potent siRNA payloads with reliable in vivo delivery for efficient target inhibition. We used a functional "Sensor" assay to establish a library of potent siRNAs against RAS pathway genes and to show that they efficiently suppress their targets at low dose. This reduces off-target effects and enables combination gene knockdown. We administered Sensor siRNAs in vitro and in vivo and validated the delivery of KRAS siRNA alone and siRNA targeting the complete RAF effector node (A/B/CRAF) as promising strategies to treat KRAS-mutant colorectal cancer. We further demonstrate that improved therapeutic efficacy is achieved by formulating siRNA payloads that combine both single-gene siRNA and node-targeted siRNAs (KRAS + PIK3CA/B). The customizable nature of Sensor siRNA payloads offers a universal platform for the combination target identification and development of RNAi therapeutics. SIGNIFICANCE:To advance RNAi therapy for KRAS-mutant cancer, we developed a validated siRNA library against RAS pathway genes that enables combination gene silencing. Using an in vivo model for real-time siRNA delivery tracking, we show that siRNA-mediated inhibition of KRAS as well as RAF or PI3K combinations can impair KRAS-mutant colorectal cancer in xenograft models.