ABSTRACT: We report the design, synthesis, and evaluation of potent and selective inhibitors of aldo-keto reductase 1C3 (AKR1C3), an important enzyme in the regulatory pathway controlling proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis in myeloid cells. Combination treatment with the nontoxic AKR1C3 inhibitors and etoposide or daunorubicin in acute myeloid leukemia cell lines, elicits a potent adjuvant effect, potentiating the cytotoxicity of etoposide by up to 6.25-fold and the cytotoxicity of daunorubicin by >10-fold. The results validate AKR1C3 inhibition as a common adjuvant target across multiple AML subtypes. These compounds in coadministration with chemotherapeutics in clinical use enhance therapeutic index and may avail chemotherapy as a treatment option to the pediatric and geriatric population currently unable to tolerate the side effects of cancer drug regimens.
Project description:Aldo-keto reductase 1C3 (AKR1C3) catalyzes the synthesis of 9?,11?-prostaglandin (PG) F2? and PGF2? prostanoids that sustain the growth of myeloid precursors in the bone marrow. The enzyme is overexpressed in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL). Moreover, AKR1C3 confers chemotherapeutic resistance to the anthracyclines: first-line agents for the treatment of leukemias. The highly homologous isoforms AKR1C1 and AKR1C2 inactivate 5?-dihydrotestosterone, and their inhibition would be undesirable. We report herein the identification of AKR1C3 inhibitors that demonstrate exquisite isoform selectivity for AKR1C3 over the other closely related isoforms to the order of >2800-fold. Biological evaluation of our isoform-selective inhibitors revealed a high degree of synergistic drug action in combination with the clinical leukemia therapeutics daunorubicin and cytarabine in in vitro cellular models of AML and primary patient-derived T-ALL cells. Our developed compounds exhibited >100-fold dose reduction index that results in complete resensitization of a daunorubicin-resistant AML cell line to the chemotherapeutic and >100-fold dose reduction of cytarabine in both AML cell lines and primary T-ALL cells.
Project description:Olaparib is a potent poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase inhibitor currently used in targeted therapy for treating cancer cells with BRCA mutations. Here we investigate the possible interference of olaparib with daunorubicin (Daun) metabolism, mediated by carbonyl-reducing enzymes (CREs), which play a significant role in the resistance of cancer cells to anthracyclines. Incubation experiments with the most active recombinant CREs showed that olaparib is a potent inhibitor of the aldo-keto reductase 1C3 (AKR1C3) enzyme. Subsequent inhibitory assays in the AKR1C3-overexpressing cellular model transfected human colorectal carcinoma HCT116 cells, demonstrating that olaparib significantly inhibits AKR1C3 at the intracellular level. Consequently, molecular docking studies have supported these findings and identified the possible molecular background of the interaction. Drug combination experiments in HCT116, human liver carcinoma HepG2, and leukemic KG1? cell lines showed that this observed interaction can be exploited for the synergistic enhancement of Daun's antiproliferative effect. Finally, we showed that olaparib had no significant effect on the mRNA expression of AKR1C3 in HepG2 and KG1? cells. In conclusion, our data demonstrate that olaparib interferes with anthracycline metabolism, and suggest that this phenomenon might be utilized for combating anthracycline resistance.
Project description:Aldo-Keto-Reductase 1C3 (type 5 17?-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (HSD)/prostaglandin (PG) F2? synthase) is the only 17?-HSD that is not a short-chain dehydrogenase/reductase. By acting as a 17-ketosteroid reductase, AKR1C3 produces potent androgens in peripheral tissues which activate the androgen receptor (AR) or act as substrates for aromatase. AKR1C3 is implicated in the production of androgens in castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) and polycystic ovarian syndrome; and is implicated in the production of aromatase substrates in breast cancer. By acting as an 11-ketoprostaglandin reductase, AKR1C3 generates 11?-PGF2? to activate the FP receptor and deprives peroxisome proliferator activator receptor? of its putative PGJ2 ligands. These growth stimulatory signals implicate AKR1C3 in non-hormonal dependent malignancies e.g. acute myeloid leukemia (AML). AKR1C3 moonlights by acting as a co-activator of the AR and stabilizes ubiquitin ligases. AKR1C3 inhibitors have been used clinically for CRPC and AML and can be used to probe its pluripotency.
Project description:Over the last few years, aldo-keto reductase family 1 member C3 (AKR1C3) has been associated with the emergence of multidrug resistance (MDR), thereby hindering chemotherapy against cancer. In particular, impaired efficacy of the gold standards of induction therapy in acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) has been correlated with AKR1C3 expression, as this enzyme metabolises several drugs including anthracyclines. Therefore, the development of selective AKR1C3 inhibitors may help to overcome chemoresistance in clinical practice. In this regard, we demonstrated that Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK) inhibitors ibrutinib and acalabrutinib efficiently prevented daunorubicin (Dau) inactivation mediated by AKR1C3 in both its recombinant form as well as during its overexpression in cancer cells. This revealed a synergistic effect of BTK inhibitors on Dau cytotoxicity in cancer cells expressing AKR1C3 both exogenously and endogenously, thus reverting anthracycline resistance in vitro. These findings suggest that BTK inhibitors have a novel off-target action, which can be exploited against leukaemia through combination regimens with standard chemotherapeutics like anthracyclines.
Project description:Aberrant androgen receptor (AR) activation is the major driver of castrate resistant prostate cancer (CRPC). CRPC is ultimately fatal and more therapeutic agents are needed to treat this disease. Compounds that target the androgen axis by inhibiting androgen biosynthesis and or AR signaling are potential candidates for use in CRPC treatment and are currently being pursued aggressively. Aldo-keto reductase 1C3 (AKR1C3) plays a pivotal role in androgen biosynthesis within the prostate. It catalyzes the 17-ketoreduction of weak androgen precursors to give testosterone and 5?-dihydrotestosterone. AKR1C3 expression and activity has been implicated in the development of CRPC, making it a rational target. Selective inhibition of AKR1C3 will be important, however, due to the presence of closely related isoforms, AKR1C1 and AKR1C2 that are also involved in androgen inactivation. We examine the evidence that supports the vital role of AKR1C3 in CRPC and recent developments in the discovery of potent and selective AKR1C3 inhibitors. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled 'CSR 2013'.
Project description:Aldo-keto reductase 1C3 (AKR1C3) is a human enzyme that catalyzes the NADPH-dependent reduction of steroids and prostaglandins. AKR1C3 overexpression is associated with the proliferation of hormone-dependent cancers, most notably breast and prostate cancers. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and their analogues are well characterized inhibitors of AKR1C3. Here, the X-ray crystal structure of 3-phenoxybenzoic acid in complex with AKR1C3 is presented. This structure provides useful information for the future development of new anticancer agents by structure-guided drug design.
Project description:The aldo-keto reductase 1C3 (AKR1C3) has been heavily implicated in the propagation of prostate malignancy. AKR1C3 protein is elevated within prostate cancer tissue, it contributes to the formation of androgens and downstream stimulation of the androgen receptor (AR). Elevated expression of AKR1C3 is also reported in acute myeloid leukemia but the target nuclear receptors have been identified as members of the peroxisome-proliferator activated receptor (PPARs) subfamily. Thus, AKR1C3 cancer biology is likely to be tissue dependent and hormonally linked to the availability of ligands for both the steroidogenic and non-steroidogenic nuclear receptors.In the current study we investigated the potential for AKR1C3 to regulate the availability of prostaglandin-derived ligands for PPARg mainly, prostaglandin J2 (PGJ2). Using prostate cancer cell lines with stably reduced AKR1C3 levels we examined the impact of AKR1C3 upon proliferation mediated by PPAR ligands.These studies revealed knockdown of AKR1C3 had no effect upon the sensitivity of androgen receptor independent prostate cancer cells towards PPAR ligands. However, the reduction of levels of AKR1C3 was accompanied by a significantly reduced mRNA expression of a range of HDACs, transcriptional co-regulators, and increased sensitivity towards SAHA, a clinically approved histone deacetylase inhibitor.These results suggest a hitherto unidentified link between AKR1C3 levels and the epigenetic status in prostate cancer cells. This raises an interesting possibility of a novel rational to target AKR1C3, the utilization of AKRIC3 selective inhibitors in combination with HDAC inhibition as part of novel epigenetic therapies in androgen deprivation therapy recurrent prostate cancer.
Project description:Aldo-keto reductase 1C3 (AKR1C3), also known as type 5 17?-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase, is a downstream steroidogenic enzyme and converts androgen precursors to the potent androgen receptor ligands: testosterone and 5?-dihydrotestosterone. Studies have shown that AKR1C3 is involved in the development of castration resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) and that it is a rational drug target for the treatment of CRPC. Baccharin, a component of Brazilian propolis, has been observed to exhibit a high inhibitory potency and selectivity for AKR1C3 over other AKR1C isoforms and is a promising lead compound for developing more potent and selective inhibitors. Here, we report the screening of fifteen baccharin analogs as selective inhibitors against AKR1C3 versus AKR1C2 (type 3 3?-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase). Among these analogs, the inhibitory activity and selectivity of thirteen compounds were evaluated for the first time. The substitution of the 4-dihydrocinnamoyloxy group of baccharin by an acetate group displayed nanomolar inhibitory potency (IC50: 440 nM) and a 102-fold selectivity over AKR1C2. By contrast, when the cinnamic acid group of baccharin was esterified, there was a dramatic decrease in potency and selectivity for AKR1C3 in comparison to baccharin. Low or sub-micromolar inhibition was observed when the 3-prenyl group of baccharin was removed, and the selectivity over AKR1C2 was low. Although unsubstituted baccharin was still the most potent (IC50: 100 nM) and selective inhibitor for AKR1C3, these data provide structure-activity relationships required for the optimization of new baccharin analogs. They suggest that the carboxylate group on cinnamic acid, the prenyl group, and either retention of 4-dihydrocinnamoyloxy group or acetate substituent on cinnamic acid are important to maintain the high potency and selectivity for AKR1C3.
Project description:The aldo-keto reductase 1C3 (AKR1C3) gene located on chromosome 10p15-p14, a regulator of myeloid cell proliferation and differentiation, represents an important candidate gene for studying human carcinogenesis. In a prospectively enrolled population-based case-control study of Han Chinese conducted in Kaohsiung in southern Taiwan, a total of 114 leukemia cases and 221 controls <20 years old were recruited between November 1997 and December 2005. The present study set out to evaluate the association between childhood leukemia and both maternal and offspring's genotypes. To do so, we conducted a systematic assessment of common single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) at the 5' flanking 10 kb to 3' UTR of AKR1C3 gene. Gln5His and three tagSNPs (rs2245191, rs10508293 and rs3209896) and one multimarker (rs2245191, rs10508293 and rs3209896) were selected with average 90% coverage of untagged SNPs by using the HapMap II data set. Odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals were adjusted for age and gender. After correcting for multiple comparisons, we observed that risk of developing childhood leukemia is significantly associated with rs10508293 polymorphism on intron 4 of the AKR1C3 gene in both offspring alone and in the combined maternal and offspring genotypes (nominal P < 0.0001, permutation P < 0.005). The maternal methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase A1298C polymorphism was found to be an effect modifier of the maternal intron 4 polymorphism of the AKR1C3 gene (rs10508293) and the childhood leukemia risk. In conclusion, this study suggests that AKR1C3 polymorphisms may be important predictive markers for childhood leukemia susceptibility.
Project description:The progression of castration resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) is driven by the intratumoral conversion of adrenal androgen precursors to potent androgens. The expression of aldo-keto reductase 1C3 (AKR1C3), which catalyses the reduction of weak androgens to more potent androgens, is significantly increased in CRPC tumours. The oxidation of androgens to their inactive form is catalysed by 17?-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 2 (17?HSD2), but little attention is given to the expression levels of this enzyme. In this study, we show that the 11-oxygenated androgen precursors of adrenal origin are the preferred substrate for AKR1C3. In particular we show that the enzymatic efficiency of AKR1C3 is 8- and 24-fold greater for 11-ketoandrostenedione than for the classic substrates androstenedione and 5?-androstanedione, respectively. Using three independent experimental systems and a computational model we subsequently show that increased ratios of AKR1C3:17?HSD2 significantly favours the flux through the 11-oxygenated androgen pathway as compared to the classical or 5?-androstanedione pathways. Our findings reveal that the flux through the classical and 5?-androstanedione pathways are limited by the low catalytic efficiently of AKR1C3 towards classical androgens combined with the high catalytic efficiency of 17?HSD2, and that the expression of the oxidative enzyme therefore plays a vital role in determining the steady state concentration of active androgens. Using microarray data from prostate tissue we confirm that the AKR1C3:17?HSD2 ratio is significantly increased in patients undergoing androgen deprivation therapy as compared to benign tissue, and further increased in patients with CRPC. Taken together this study therefore demonstrates that the ratio of AKR1C3:17?HSD2 is more important than AKR1C3 expression alone in determining intratumoral androgen levels and that 11-oxygenated androgens may play a bigger role in CRPC than previously anticipated.