Targeting the Wnt/?-catenin signaling pathway in cancer.
ABSTRACT: The aberrant Wnt/?-catenin signaling pathway facilitates cancer stem cell renewal, cell proliferation and differentiation, thus exerting crucial roles in tumorigenesis and therapy response. Accumulated investigations highlight the therapeutic potential of agents targeting Wnt/?-catenin signaling in cancer. Wnt ligand/ receptor interface, ?-catenin destruction complex and TCF/?-catenin transcription complex are key components of the cascade and have been targeted with interventions in preclinical and clinical evaluations. This scoping review aims at outlining the latest progress on the current approaches and perspectives of Wnt/?-catenin signaling pathway targeted therapy in various cancer types. Better understanding of the updates on the inhibitors, antagonists and activators of Wnt/?-catenin pathway rationalizes innovative strategies for personalized cancer treatment. Further investigations are warranted to confirm precise and secure targeted agents and achieve optimal use with clinical benefits in malignant diseases.
Project description:Colorectal cancer (CRC) is a common malignancy with high morbidity and mortality worldwide. To date, chemotherapy plays an important role in the treatment of CRC patients. Multidrug resistance (MDR) is one of the major hurdles in chemotherapy for CRC, and the underlying mechanisms need to be explored. Studies have demonstrated that Wnt/?-catenin signaling plays a critical role in oncogenesis and tumor development, and its function in inhibiting apoptosis could facilitate tumor chemoresistance. Recent investigations have also suggested the regulatory effects of the Wnt/?-catenin signaling pathway in response to chemotherapeutic agents in CRC. Here, we particularly focus on reviewing the evidences suggesting the mechanisms of Wnt/?-catenin signaling in the chemoresistance modulation of colorectal cancer.
Project description:The Wnt/?-catenin signaling is a conserved pathway that has a crucial role in embryonic and adult life. Dysregulation of the Wnt/?-catenin pathway has been associated with diseases including cancer, and components of the signaling have been proposed as innovative therapeutic targets, mainly for cancer therapy. The attention of the worldwide researchers paid to this issue is increasing, also in view of the therapeutic potential of these agents in diseases, such as Parkinson's disease (PD), for which no cure is existing today. Much evidence indicates that abnormal Wnt/?-catenin signaling is involved in tumor immunology and the targeting of Wnt/?-catenin pathway has been also proposed as an attractive strategy to potentiate cancer immunotherapy. During the last decade, several products, including naturally occurring dietary agents as well as a wide variety of products from plant sources, including curcumin, quercetin, berberin, and ginsenosides, have been identified as potent modulators of the Wnt/?-catenin signaling and have gained interest as promising candidates for the development of chemopreventive or therapeutic drugs for cancer. In this review we make an overview of the nature-derived compounds reported to have antitumor activity by modulating the Wnt/?-catenin signaling, also focusing on extraction methods, chemical features, and bio-activity assays used for the screening of these compounds.
Project description:Dysregulation of the Wnt signaling pathway is an underlying mechanism in multiple diseases, particularly in cancer. Until recently, identifying agents that target this pathway has been difficult and as a result, no approved drugs exist that specifically target this pathway. We reported previously that the anthelmintic drug Niclosamide inhibits the Wnt/?-catenin signaling pathway and suppresses colorectal cancer cell growth in vitro and in vivo. In an effort to build on this finding, we sought to discover new Wnt/?-catenin inhibitors that expanded the chemotype structural diversity. Here, we asked a specific SAR question unresolved in previous SAR studies of Niclosamide's inhibition of Wnt/?-catenin signaling to identify a new structural class of Wnt/?-catenin signaling inhibitors based on a triazole motif. Similar to Niclosamide, we found that the new triazole derivatives internalized Frizzled-1 GFP receptors, inhibited Wnt/?-catenin signaling in the TOPflash assay and reduced Wnt/?-catenin target gene levels in CRC cells harboring mutations in the Wnt pathway. Moreover, in pilot SAR studies, we found the Wnt/?-catenin SAR trends in the anilide region were generally similar between the two chemical classes of inhibitors. Overall, these studies demonstrate the ability to use the SAR of the Niclosamide salicylanilide chemical class to expand the structural diversity of Wnt/?-catenin inhibitors.
Project description:Mounting evidence has indicated microRNA (miR) dysregulation and the Wnt/?-catenin signaling pathway jointly drive carcinogenesis, cancer metastasis, and drug-resistance. The current review will focus on the role of the crosstalk between miRs and the Wnt/?-catenin signaling pathway in cancer development. MiRs were found to activate or inhibit the canonical Wnt pathway at various steps. On the other hand, Wnt activation increases expression of miR by directly binding to its promoter and activating transcription. Moreover, there are mutual feedback loops between some miRs and the Wnt/?-catenin signaling pathway. Clinical trials of miR-based therapeutic agents are investigated for solid and hematological tumors, however, challenges concerning low bioavailability and possible side effects must be overcome before the final clinical application. This review will describe current understanding of miR crosstalk with the Wnt/?-catenin signaling cascade. Better understanding of the regulatory network will provide insight into miR-based therapeutic development.
Project description:Wnt ligand expression and activation of the Wnt/?-catenin pathway have been associated with pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma, but whether Wnt activity is required for the development of pancreatic cancer has remained unclear. Here, we report the results of three different approaches to inhibit the Wnt/?-catenin pathway in a established transgenic mouse model of pancreatic cancer. First, we found that ?-catenin null cells were incapable of undergoing acinar to ductal metaplasia, a process associated with development of premalignant pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia lesions. Second, we addressed the specific role of ligand-mediated Wnt signaling through inducible expression of Dkk1, an endogenous secreted inhibitor of the canonical Wnt pathway. Finally, we targeted the Wnt pathway with OMP-18R5, a therapeutic antibody that interacts with multiple Frizzled receptors. Together, these approaches showed that ligand-mediated activation of the Wnt/?-catenin pathway is required to initiate pancreatic cancer. Moreover, they establish that Wnt signaling is also critical for progression of pancreatic cancer, a finding with potential therapeutic implications.
Project description:Osteosarcoma (OS) accounts for 9 percent of cancer-related deaths in young people. The PI3K/Akt signaling, a well-known carcinogenic signaling pathway in human cancer, cooperates with other signaling pathways such as Wnt signaling to promote cancer progression. Wnt7b, as a transforming member of the Wnt family, could activate mTORC1 through PI3K-AKT signaling and is upregulated in OS. In the present study, we found that miR-342-5p inhibits Wnt7b expression via direct binding to Wnt7b 3'-UTR. miR-342-5p overexpression remarkably suppressed the viability and invasion while enhanced the apoptosis of OS cells; meanwhile, Wnt7b, ?-catenin, c-myc, and cyclin D1 proteins were reduced while E-cadherin protein showed to be increased. Consistent with its expression pattern, Wnt7b exerted oncogenic effects on OS cells. Wnt7b could significantly attenuate the impacts of miR-342-5p. In conclusion, we demonstrated a miR-342-5p/Wnt7b axis that regulates the capacity of OS cells to proliferate and to invade through Wnt/?-catenin signaling. The miR-342-5p/Wnt7b axis might be novel targets for OS targeted therapy, which needs further in vivo and clinical investigations.
Project description:The Wnt/beta-catenin signaling pathway regulates cell fate and behavior during embryogenesis, adult tissue homeostasis, and regeneration. When inappropriately activated, the pathway has been linked to colorectal cancer and melanoma, and when attenuated it may contribute to Alzheimer's disease and osteoporosis. Small molecules that modulate Wnt signaling will likely provide new insights into the regulation of this key developmental pathway and ultimately provide pharmacological agents to control Wnt signaling in vivo. To this end, we screened a library of 100,000 small molecules for activity in a cell-based assay of Wnt/beta-catenin signaling and discovered a purine derivative, QS11, that synergizes with Wnt-3a ligand in the activation of Wnt/beta-catenin signal transduction. Through affinity chromatography and subsequent functional assays, we showed that QS11 binds and inhibits the GTPase activating protein of ADP-ribosylation factor 1 (ARFGAP1), suggesting that QS11 modulates Wnt/beta-catenin signaling through an effect on protein trafficking. Consistent with its function as an ARFGAP inhibitor, QS11 inhibits migration of ARFGAP overexpressing breast cancer cells.
Project description:Background:Sanguisorba officinalis, a popular Chinese herb, called DiYu, has been shown to inhibit the growth of many human cancer cell lines, including colorectal cancer cells. The aims of this study were to discover the active compound and molecular mechanism of S. officinalis against Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway and develop Wnt inhibitors from natural products as anti-colorectal cancer agents. Methods:1,4,6-Tri-O-galloyl-β-d-glucopyranose (TGG) was obtained by the preparative HPLC. The effect of DiYu on proliferation of NIH3T3 and HT29 was detected by MTT assay. Luciferase reporter assay was applied to investigate the activity of Wnt/β-catenin signaling in NIH3T3. The expression levels of mRNA and protein were detected by RT-PCR and western blot. Immunofluorescence assay was used to measure the level of β-catenin in cytoplasm and nucleus. Transcriptomic profiling study was performed to investigate the molecular mechanism of DiYu on the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway. Results:TGG significantly inhibited the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway, down-regulated the expression of β-catenin and Wnt target genes (Dkk1, c-Myc, FGF20, NKD1, Survivin), up-regulated the levels of cleaved caspase3, cleaved PARP and ratio of Bax/Bcl-2, which may explain the apoptosis of HT29. Conclusions:Our study enhanced the discovery of the materials and elucidation of mechanisms that account for the anti-Wnt activity of natural inhibitor (DiYu) and identified the potential of TGG to be developed as anti-colorectal cancer drugs.
Project description:Abnormal activation of canonical Wnt/?-catenin signaling is implicated in many diseases including cancer. As a result, therapeutic agents that disrupt this signaling pathway have been highly sought after. Triptonide is a key bioactive small molecule identified in a traditional Chinese medicine named Tripterygium wilfordii Hook F., and it has a broad spectrum of biological functions. Here we show that triptonide can effectively inhibit canonical Wnt/?-catenin signaling by targeting the downstream C-terminal transcription domain of ?-catenin or a nuclear component associated with ?-catenin. In addition, triptonide treatment robustly rescued the zebrafish "eyeless" phenotype induced by GSK-3? antagonist 6-bromoindirubin-30-oxime (BIO) for Wnt signaling activation during embryonic gastrulation. Finally, triptonide effectively induced apoptosis of Wnt-dependent cancer cells, supporting the therapeutic potential of triptonide.
Project description:Epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is the leading cause of gynecologic cancer mortality worldwide. Platinum-based therapy is the standard first line treatment and while most patients initially respond, resistance to chemotherapy usually arises. Major signaling pathways frequently upregulated in chemoresistant cells and important in the maintenance of cancer stem cells (CSCs) include Wnt/?-catenin, mTOR, and STAT3. The major objective of our study was to investigate the treatment of ovarian cancer with targeted agents that inhibit these three pathways. Here we demonstrate that niclosamide, a salicylamide derivative, and two synthetically manufactured niclosamide analogs (analog 11 and 32) caused significant inhibition of proliferation of two chemoresistant ovarian cancer cell lines (A2780cp20 and SKOV3Trip2), tumorspheres isolated from the ascites of EOC patients, and cells from a chemoresistant patient-derived xenograft (PDX). This work shows that all three agents significantly decreased the expression of proteins in the Wnt/?-catenin, mTOR and STAT3 pathways and preferentially targeted cells that expressed the ovarian CSC surface protein CD133. It also illustrates the potential of drug repurposing for chemoresistant EOC and can serve as a basis for pathway-oriented in vivo studies.