Preclinical evaluation of radiation and perifosine in a genetically and histologically accurate model of brainstem glioma.
ABSTRACT Brainstem gliomas (BSG) are a rare group of central nervous system tumors that arise mostly in children and usually portend a particularly poor prognosis. We report the development of a genetically engineered mouse model of BSG using the RCAS/tv-a system and its implementation in preclinical trials. Using immunohistochemistry, we found that platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) receptor alpha is overexpressed in 67% of pediatric BSGs. Based on this observation, we induced low-grade BSGs by overexpressing PDGF-B in the posterior fossa of neonatal nestin tv-a mice. To generate high-grade BSGs, we overexpressed PDGF-B in combination with Ink4a-ARF loss, given that this locus is commonly lost in high-grade pediatric BSGs. We show that the likely cells of origin for these mouse BSGs exist on the floor of the fourth ventricle and cerebral aqueduct. Irradiation of these high-grade BSGs shows that although single doses of 2, 6, and 10 Gy significantly increased the percent of terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end labeling (TUNEL)-positive nuclei, only 6 and 10 Gy significantly induce cell cycle arrest. Perifosine, an inhibitor of AKT signaling, significantly induced TUNEL-positive nuclei in this high-grade BSG model, but in combination with 10 Gy, it did not significantly increase the percent of TUNEL-positive nuclei relative to 10 Gy alone at 6, 24, and 72 hours. Survival analysis showed that a single dose of 10 Gy significantly prolonged survival by 27% (P = 0.0002) but perifosine did not (P = 0.92). Perifosine + 10 Gy did not result in a significantly increased survival relative to 10 Gy alone (P = 0.23). This PDGF-induced BSG model can serve as a preclinical tool for the testing of novel agents.
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ABSTRACT: Malignant gliomas are the most common malignant primary brain tumors and one of the most challenging forms of cancers to treat. Despite advances in conventional treatment, the outcome for patients remains almost universally fatal. This poor prognosis is due to therapeutic resistance and tumor recurrence after surgical removal. However, over the past decade, molecular targeted therapy has held the promise of transforming the care of malignant glioma patients. Significant progress in understanding the molecular pathology of gliomagenesis and maintenance of the malignant phenotypes will open opportunities to rationally develop new molecular targeted therapy options. Recently, therapeutic strategies have focused on targeting pro-growth signaling mediated by receptor tyrosine kinase/RAS/phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase pathway, proangiogenic pathways, and several other vital intracellular signaling networks, such as proteasome and histone deacetylase. However, several factors such as cross-talk between the altered pathways, intratumoral molecular heterogeneity, and therapeutic resistance of glioma stem cells (GSCs) have limited the activity of single agents. Efforts are ongoing to study in depth the complex molecular biology of glioma, develop novel regimens targeting GSCs, and identify biomarkers to stratify patients with the individualized molecular targeted therapy. Here, we review the molecular alterations relevant to the pathology of malignant glioma, review current advances in clinical targeted trials, and discuss the challenges, controversies, and future directions of molecular targeted therapy.
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ABSTRACT: Diffuse intrinsic pontine gliomas (DIPGs) represent a particularly lethal type of pediatric brain cancer with no effective therapeutic options. Our laboratory has previously reported the development of genetically engineered DIPG mouse models using the RCAS/tv-a system, including a model driven by PDGF-B, H3.3K27M, and p53 loss. These models can serve as a platform in which to test novel therapeutics prior to the initiation of human clinical trials. In this study, an in vitro high-throughput drug screen as part of the DIPG preclinical consortium using cell-lines derived from our DIPG models identified BMS-754807 as a drug of interest in DIPG. BMS-754807 is a potent and reversible small molecule multi-kinase inhibitor with many targets including IGF-1R, IR, MET, TRKA, TRKB, AURKA, AURKB. In vitro evaluation showed significant cytotoxic effects with an IC50 of 0.13 μM, significant inhibition of proliferation at a concentration of 1.5 μM, as well as inhibition of AKT activation. Interestingly, IGF-1R signaling was absent in serum-free cultures from the PDGF-B; H3.3K27M; p53 deficient model suggesting that the antitumor activity of BMS-754807 in this model is independent of IGF-1R. In vivo, systemic administration of BMS-754807 to DIPG-bearing mice did not prolong survival. Pharmacokinetic analysis demonstrated that tumor tissue drug concentrations of BMS-754807 were well below the identified IC50, suggesting that inadequate drug delivery may limit in vivo efficacy. In summary, an unbiased in vitro drug screen identified BMS-754807 as a potential therapeutic agent in DIPG, but BMS-754807 treatment in vivo by systemic delivery did not significantly prolong survival of DIPG-bearing mice.PLoS ONE 01/2015; 10(3):e0118926. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0118926 · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: High-grade Brainstem Glioma (BSG), also known as Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG), is an incurable pediatric brain cancer. Increasing evidence supports the existence of regional differences in gliomagenesis such that BSG is considered a distinct disease from glioma of the cerebral cortex (CG). In an effort to elucidate unique characteristics of BSG, we conducted expression analysis of mouse PDGF-B-driven BSG and CG initiated in Nestin progenitor cells and identified a short list of expression changes specific to the brainstem gliomagenesis process, including abnormal upregulation of paired box 3 (Pax3). In the neonatal mouse brain, Pax3 expression marks a subset of brainstem progenitor cells, while it is absent from the cerebral cortex, mirroring its regional expression in glioma. Ectopic expression of Pax3 in normal brainstem progenitors in vitro shows that Pax3 inhibits apoptosis. Pax3-induced inhibition of apoptosis is p53-dependent, however, and in the absence of p53, Pax3 promotes proliferation of brainstem progenitors. In vivo, Pax3 enhances PDGF-B-driven gliomagenesis by shortening tumor latency and increasing tumor penetrance and grade, in a region-specific manner, while loss of Pax3 function extends survival of PDGF-B-driven;p53-deficient BSG-bearing mice by 33%. Importantly, Pax3 is regionally expressed in human glioma as well, with high PAX3 mRNA characterizing 40% of human BSG, revealing a subset of tumors that significantly associates with PDGFRA alterations, amplifications of cell cycle regulatory genes, and is exclusive of ACVR1 mutations. Collectively, these data suggest that regional Pax3 expression not only marks a novel subset of BSG but also contributes to PDGF-B-induced brainstem gliomagenesis.10/2014; 2(1):134. DOI:10.1186/PREACCEPT-1939226999140893