Trametinib overcomes KRAS-G12V-induced osimertinib resistance in a leptomeningeal carcinomatosis model of EGFR-mutant lung cancer.
ABSTRACT: Leptomeningeal carcinomatosis (LMC) occurs frequently in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) harboring epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutations and is associated with acquired resistance to EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors (EGFR-TKIs). However, the mechanism by which LMC acquires resistance to osimertinib, a third-generation EGFR-TKI, is unclear. In this study, we elucidated the resistance mechanism and searched for a novel therapeutic strategy. We induced osimertinib resistance in a mouse model of LMC using an EGFR-mutant NSCLC cell line (PC9) via continuous oral osimertinib treatment and administration of established resistant cells and examined the resistance mechanism using next-generation sequencing. We detected the Kirsten rat sarcoma (KRAS)-G12V mutation in resistant cells, which retained the EGFR exon 19 deletion. Experiments involving KRAS knockdown in resistant cells and KRAS-G12V overexpression in parental cells revealed the involvement of KRAS-G12V in osimertinib resistance. Cotreatment with trametinib (a MEK inhibitor) and osimertinib resensitized the cells to osimertinib. Furthermore, in the mouse model of LMC with resistant cells, combined osimertinib and trametinib treatment successfully controlled LMC progression. These findings suggest a potential novel therapy against KRAS-G12V-harboring osimertinib-resistant LMC in EGFR-mutant NSCLC.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>The third-generation epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) inhibitor, Osimertinib, is used to treat non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients with tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI) resistance caused by acquired EGFR T790M mutation. However, patients eventually develop resistance against Osimertinib with mechanisms not yet fully clarified. Activated alternative survival pathways within the tumor cells and cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs) have been proposed to contribute to Osimertinib resistance. MET and MEK inhibitors may overcome EGFR-independent resistance. Another acquired resistance mechanism of EGFR-TKI is the up-regulation of the RAS/RAF/MEK/ERK signaling pathway, which is the key to cell survival and proliferation; this may occur downstream of various other signaling pathways. In this report, we reveal the possible regulatory mechanism and inhibitory effect of the MEK inhibitor trametinib applied to MEK/ERK/miR-21 axis and PDCD4 in Osimertinib resistance. We found a possible regulatory role of PDCD4 in ERK signaling. PDCD4 is a new type of tumor suppressor that has multiple functions of inhibiting cell growth, tumor invasion, metastasis, and inducing apoptosis. Previous bioinformatics analysis has confirmed that PDCD4 contains the binding site of miR-21 and acts as a tumor suppressor in the regulation of various processes associated with the development of cancer, including cell proliferation, invasion, metastasis, and neoplastic transformation. Based on the above analysis, we hypothesized that the tumor suppressor PDCD4 is one of the effective inhibitory targets of miR-21-5p.<h4>Methods</h4>The expression between EGFR and ERK2 in lung adenocarcinoma was evaluated from the TCGA database. Osimertinib-sensitive and resistant NSCLC cells obtained from patients were used to co-culture with human lung fibroblasts (HLFs) to generate CAF cells (termed CAF_R1 and CAF_S1), and the functional roles of these CAF cells plus the regulatory mechanisms were further explored. Then, MEK inhibitor Trametinib with or without Osimertinib was applied in xenograft model derived from patients to validate the effects on growth inhibition of Osimertinib-resistant NSCLC tumors.<h4>Result</h4>ERK2 expression correlated with EGFR expression and higher ERK2 level was associated with worse prognosis of patients and Osimertinib resistance. CAFs derived from Osimertinib-resistant cells secreted more IL-6, IL-8, and hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), expressed stronger CAF markers including α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA), fibroblast activation protein (FAP) plus platelet-derived growth factor receptor (PDGFR), and enhanced stemness and Osimertinib resistance in NSCLC cells. Meanwhile, increased MEK/ERK/miR-21 expressions were found in both CAFs and NSCLC cells. MEK inhibitor Trametinib significantly abrogated the abovementioned effects by modulating β-catenin, STAT3, and ERK. The xenograft model showed combining Osimertinib and Trametinib resulted in the most prominent growth inhibition of Osimertinib-resistant NSCLC tumors.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Our results suggested that MEK/ERK/miR-21 signaling is critical in Osimertinib resistance and CAF transformation of NSCLC cells, and MEK inhibitor Trametinib significantly suppressed Osimertinib-resistant NSCLC tumor growth by abolishing both processes.
Project description:Osimertinib has become a standard of care in the first-line treatment of advanced-stage non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) harboring exon 19 and 21 activating mutations in the <i>EGFR</i> gene. Nevertheless, the 18.9-month median progression-free survival emphasizes the fact that resistance to osimertinib therapy is inevitable. Acquired resistance mechanisms to osimertinib in EGFR-driven NSCLC include <i>MET</i> amplification, <i>EGFR</i> C797S mutation, neuroendocrine differentiation, small-cell lung carcinoma histologic transformation, <i>PD-L1</i> and <i>KRAS</i> amplifications and <i>ESR1-AKAP12</i> and <i>MKRN1-BRAF</i> translocations, as well as <i>BRAF</i> V600 mutation. This last one represents 3% of the acquired resistance mechanisms to osimertinib. In this review, we discuss the rationale for EGFR/BRAF/MEK co-inhibition in the light of a clinical case of <i>EGFR</i>-mutant NSCLC developing a <i>BRAF</i> V600 mutation as an acquired resistance mechanism to osimertinib and responding to the association of osimertinib plus dabrafenib and trametinib. Additionally, we discuss the acquired resistance mechanisms to osimertinib plus dabrafenib and trametinib combination in that context.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients treated with first-generation epidermal growth factor receptor-tyrosine kinase inhibitor (EGFR-TKI) almost always acquire resistance, and the development of novel techniques analyzing circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) have made it possible for liquid biopsy to detect genetic alterations from limited amount of DNA with less invasiveness. While a large amount of patients with EGFR exon 21 p.Thr790 Met (T790M) benefited from osimertinib treatment, acquired resistance to osimertinb has subsequently become a growing challenge.<h4>Methods</h4>We performed tissue and liquid rebiopsy on 50 patients with EGFR-mutant NSCLC who acquired resistance to first-generation EGFR-TKIs. Plasma samples underwent droplet digital PCR (ddPCR) and next-generation sequencing (NGS) examinations. Corresponding tissue samples underwent NGS and Cobas<sup>®</sup> EGFR Mutation Test v2 (Cobas) examinations.<h4>Results</h4>Of the 50 patients evaluated, the mutation detection rates of liquid biopsy group and tissue biopsy group demonstrated no significant differences (41/48, 85.4% vs. 44/48, 91.7%; OR=0.53, 95% CI=0.15 to 1.95). Overall concordance, defined as the proportion of patients for whom at least one identical genomic alteration was identified in both tissue and plasma, was 78.3% (36/46, 95% CI=0.39 to 2.69). Moreover, our results showed that almost half of the patients (46%, 23/50) resistant to first-generation EGFR-TKI harbored p.Thr790 Met (T790M) mutation. 82.6% (19/23) of the T790M positive patients were analyzed by liquid biopsy and 60.9% (14/23) by tumor tissue sequencing. Meanwhile, a wide range of uncommon mutations was detected, and novel mechanisms of osimertinib resistance were discovered. In addition, 16.7% (2/12) of the T790M positive patients with either TP53 R237C or KRAS G12V failed to benefit from the subsequent osimertinib treatment.<h4>Conclusion</h4>Our results emphasized that liquid biopsy is applicable to analyze the drug resistance mechanisms of NSCLC patients treated with EGFR-TKIs. Moreover, we discovered two uncommon mutations, TP53 R273C and KRAS G12V, which attenuates the effectiveness of osimertinib.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Osimertinib (AZD9291) is a third-generation EGFR-tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI) that selectively inhibits the activating EGFR mutation and T790M mutation, and is currently used globally to treat EGFR-mutant non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). However, acquired resistance to osimertinib is inevitable.<h4>Methods</h4>We established osimertinib-resistant cells (PC9/T790M/AZDR and H1975/AZDR) derived from EGFR-mutant NSCLC cells harboring T790M mutation, and investigated the mechanism of acquired resistance to osimertinib by whole-exome sequencing and multiple phospho-receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) array. A tumor specimen from an EGFR-mutant NSCLC patient with acquired resistance to osimertinib was also subjected to immunohistochemical analysis.<h4>Results</h4>Whole-exome sequencing analysis demonstrated that genetic alterations, such as acquisition of EGFR C797S, loss of T790M mutation, MET amplification, or mutated KRAS, MEK, BRAF, PIK3CA, were not detected. Analysis of phospho-RTK array revealed that insulin-like growth factor-1 receptor (IGF1R) was activated in PC9/T790M/AZDR and H1975/AZDR cells. Knockdown of IGF1R by siRNA as well as inhibition of IGF1R activation by linstinib (IGF1R inhibitor) significantly restored the sensitivity to osimertinib. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that the expression level of phosphorylated IGF1R was higher in the tumor specimen from the EGFR-mutant NSCLC patient with acquired resistance to osimertinib than in the specimen collected prior to the treatment.<h4>Conclusions</h4>IGF1R activation could occur following treatment with osimertinib in EGFR-mutant NSCLC with T790M mutation, and might be one of the mechanisms underlying osimertinib resistance. Combined treatment of osimertinib and IGF1R inhibitor might be effective in overcoming the acquired resistance to osimertinib induced by IGF1R activation.<h4>Key points</h4>Significant findings of the study: Using osimertinib-resistant cells, we found that IGF1R activation induced by osimertinib treatment in EGFR-mutant NSCLC with T790M mutation is involved in resistance. Increased phosphorylation of IGF1R was observed in the tumor specimen from an EGFR-mutant NSCLC patient with acquired osimertinib resistance.<h4>What this study adds</h4>IGF1R activation might be one of the mechanisms of osimertinib resistance. A combination therapy with osimertinib and an IGF1R inhibitor might be an optimal approach for overcoming the acquired resistance to osimertinib induced by IGF1R activation.
Project description:Osimertinib, a third-generation epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI), is used as a first-line treatment for patients with EGFR-mutant non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). However, the mechanisms underlying its anticancer activity, particularly the subsequent development of acquired resistance, are unclear. Herein, we investigated the mechanisms underlying the development of osimertinib resistance by treating NSCLC PC-9 cells (harboring an EGFR-activating mutation) with osimertinib, thereby developing five resistant cell lines, i.e., AZDR3, AZDR6, AZDR9, AZDR11, and AZDR14. The amplification of wild-type <i>EGFR</i> in AZDR3 cells and wild-type EGFR and KRAS in AZDR6 cells was also studied. AZDR3 cells showed dependence on EGFR signaling, in addition to afatinib sensitivity. AZDR9 cells harboring <i>KRAS<sup>G13D</sup></i> showed sensitivity to MEK inhibitors. Furthermore, combination treatment with EGFR and IGF1R inhibitors resulted in attenuated cell proliferation and enhanced apoptosis. In AZDR11 cells, increased Bim expression could not induce apoptosis, but Bid cleavage was found to be essential for the same. A SHP2/T507K mutation was also identified in AZDR14 cells, and, when associated with GAB1, SHP2 could activate ERK1/2, whereas a SHP2 inhibitor, TNO155, disrupted this association, thereby inhibiting GAB1 activation. Thus, diverse osimertinib resistance mechanisms were identified, providing insights for developing novel therapeutic strategies for NSCLC.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>ID1 is associated with resistance to the first generation of EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors (EGFR-TKIs) in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). However, the effect of ID1 expression on osimertinib resistance in EGFR T790M-positive NSCLC is not clear.<h4>Methods</h4>We established a drug-resistant cell line, H1975/OR, from the osimertinib-sensitive cell line H1975. Alterations in ID1 protein expression and Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT)-related proteins were detected with western blot analysis. RT-PCR was used to evaluate the differences of gene mRNA levels. ID1 silencing and overexpression were used to investigate the effects of related gene on osimertinib resistance. Cell Counting Kit-8 (CCK8) was used to assess the proliferation rate in cells with altered of ID1 expression. Transwell assay was used to evaluate the invasion ability of different cells. The effects on the cell cycle and apoptosis were also compared using flow cytometry.<h4>Results</h4>In our study, we found that in osimertinib-resistant NSCLC cells, the expression level of the EMT-related protein E-cadherin was lower than that of sensitive cells, while the expression level of ID1 and vimentin were higher than those of sensitive cells. ID1 expression levels was closely related to E-cadherin and vimentin in both osimertinib-sensitive and resistant cells. Alteration of ID1 expression in H1975/OR cells could change the expression of E-cadherin. Downregulating ID1 expression in H1975/OR cells could inhibit cell proliferation, reduce cell invasion, promote cell apoptosis and arrested the cell cycle in the G1/G0 stage phase. Our study suggests that ID1 may induce EMT in EGFR T790M-positive NSCLC, which mediates drug resistance of osimertinib.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Our study revealed the mechanism of ID1 mediated resistance to osimertinib in EGFR T790M-positive NSCLC through EMT, which may provide new ideas and methods for the treatment of EGFR mutated NSCLC after osimertinib resistance.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Third-generation epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors (EGFR-TKIs) such as osimertinib are the last line of targeted treatment of metastatic non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) EGFR-mutant harboring T790M. Different mechanisms of acquired resistance to third-generation EGFR-TKIs have been proposed. It is therefore crucial to identify new and effective strategies to overcome successive acquired mechanisms of resistance.<h4>Methods</h4>For Amplicon-seq analysis, samples from the index patient (primary and metastasis lesions at different timepoints) as well as the patient-derived orthotopic xenograft tumors corresponding to the different treatment arms were used. All samples were formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded, selected and evaluated by a pathologist. For droplet digital PCR, 20 patients diagnosed with NSCLC at baseline or progression to different lines of TKI therapies were selected. Formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded blocks corresponding to either primary tumor or metastasis specimens were used for analysis. For single-cell analysis, orthotopically grown metastases were dissected from the brain of an athymic nu/nu mouse and cryopreserved at?-80°C.<h4>Results</h4>In a brain metastasis lesion from a NSCLC patient presenting an EGFR T790M mutation, we detected MET gene amplification after prolonged treatment with osimertinib. Importantly, the combination of capmatinib (c-MET inhibitor) and afatinib (ErbB-1/2/4 inhibitor) completely suppressed tumor growth in mice orthotopically injected with cells derived from this brain metastasis. In those mice treated with capmatinib or afatinib as monotherapy, we observed the emergence of KRAS G12C clones. Single-cell gene expression analyses also revealed intratumor heterogeneity, indicating the presence of a KRAS-driven subclone. We also detected low-frequent KRAS G12C alleles in patients treated with various EGFR-TKIs.<h4>Conclusion</h4>Acquired resistance to subsequent EGFR-TKI treatment lines in EGFR-mutant lung cancer patients may induce genetic plasticity. We assess the biological insights of tumor heterogeneity in an osimertinib-resistant tumor with acquired MET-amplification and propose new treatment strategies in this situation.
Project description:Osimertinib, a third-generation irreversible epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitor (EGFR-TKI), provides marked clinical benefit for patients with EGFR-activating mutations. Unfortunately, limited treatments exist for patients who acquire osimertinib resistance. We observed two 'special' patients who regained an antitumor response with osimertinib plus aspirin treatment. As previous data indicate that aspirin induces antiproliferative effects in tumor cells, we designed a preclinical study to explore whether aspirin combined with osimertinib could synergistically sensitize osimertinib-resistant non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells. The effects of combined treatment with osimertinib and aspirin on osimertinib-resistant NSCLC cell lines were examined in vitro and in vivo. The combination of osimertinib and aspirin induced strong antiproliferative and proapoptotic effects in osimertinib-resistant NSCLC cells through inhibition of Akt/FoxO3a signaling component phosphorylation and increased Bim expression. Furthermore, Bim knockdown by siRNA significantly attenuated osimertinib resensitization by aspirin. In vivo, combination of aspirin and osimertinib significantly decreased tumor growth of PC-9GROR cell xenografts. Data of patients with NSCLC who received osimertinib treatment at Daping Hospital between January 2015 and January 2019 were reviewed retrospectively. According to clinical data for 45 patients with NSCLC, retrospective analysis showed that the median progression-free survival was significantly longer in the osimertinib plus aspirin group than in the osimertinib group. In summary, aspirin synergistically enhances the antitumor activity of osimertinib in osimertinib-resistant lung cancer cells through promoting Bim-dependent apoptosis. This combination therapy may be effective in overcoming acquired resistance to osimertinib and prolonging survival in patients with NSCLC.
Project description:Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) have demonstrated significant benefits to patients with non?small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) harboring EGFR?activating mutations; however, acquired resistance limits their long?term efficacy. Therefore, it remains an urgent requirement to discover the underlying mechanisms and investigate novel therapeutic strategies for overcoming the resistance to EGFR TKIs. The present study aimed to determine the mechanism underlying the resistance of NSCLC cells to osimertinib, a third?generation EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitor, the osimertinib?resistant NSCLC cell sub?line HCC827/OR was established in the present study. It was found that the expression levels of Bcl?2 and Bcl?xL were significantly upregulated in resistant cells compared with sensitive cells. Furthermore, the suppression of Bcl?2 and Bcl?xL through small interfering RNA?mediated gene knockdown or using a small molecule specific inhibitor ABT?263 re?sensitized HCC827/OR cells to osimertinib treatment. Moreover, the combined treatment of HCC827/OR cells with ABT?263 and osimertinib enhanced the rate of cell apoptosis through the mitochondrial apoptotic pathway. Finally, ABT?263 was able to overcome the resistance of osimertinib in xenograft tumor models. In conclusion, these findings may provide an improved concept for the development of a novel combined therapeutic strategy for the treatment of NSCLC resistance to EGFR TKIs.
Project description:Overcoming acquired resistance to epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors (EGFR-TKIs) is critical in combating EGFR-mutant non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). We tried to construct a novel therapeutic strategy to conquer the resistance to second-and third-generation EGFR-TKIs in EGFR-positive NSCLC patients. We established afatinib- and osimertinib-resistant lung adenocarcinoma cell lines. Exome sequencing, cDNA array and miRNA microarray were performed using the established cell lines to discover novel therapeutic targets associated with the resistance to second-and third-generation EGFR-TKIs. We found that ANKRD1 which is associated with the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) phenomenon and anti-apoptosis, was overexpressed in the second-and third-generation EGFR-TKIs-resistant cells at the mRNA and protein expression levels. When ANKRD1 was silenced in the EGFR-TKIs-resistant cell lines, afatinib and osimertinib could induce apoptosis of the cell lines. Imatinib could inhibit ANKRD1 expression, resulting in restoration of the sensitivity to afatinib and osimertinib of EGFR-TKI-resistant cells. In EGFR-mutant NSCLC patients, ANKRD1 was overexpressed in the tumor after the failure of EGFR-TKI therapy, especially after long-duration EGFR-TKI treatments. ANKRD1 overexpression which was associated with EMT features and anti-apoptosis, was commonly involved in resistance to second-and third-generation EGFR-TKIs. ANKRD1 inhibition could be a promising therapeutic strategy in EGFR-mutant NSCLC patients.