Molecular basis of antifolate resistance.
ABSTRACT Folates play a key role in one-carbon metabolism essential for the biosynthesis of purines, thymidylate and hence DNA replication. The antifolate methotrexate has been rationally-designed nearly 60 years ago to potently block the folate-dependent enzyme dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR) thereby achieving temporary remissions in childhood acute leukemia. Recently, the novel antifolates raltitrexed and pemetrexed that target thymidylate synthase (TS) and glycineamide ribonucleotide transformylase (GARTF) were introduced for the treatment of colorectal cancer and malignant pleural mesothelioma. (Anti)folates are divalent anions which predominantly use the reduced folate carrier (RFC) for their cellular uptake. (Anti)folates are retained intracellularly via polyglutamylation catalyzed by folylpoly-gamma-glutamate synthetase (FPGS). As the intracellular concentration of antifolates is critical for their pharmacologic activity, polyglutamylation is a key determinant of antifolate cytotoxicity. However, anticancer drug resistance phenomena pose major obstacles towards curative cancer chemotherapy. Pre-clinical and clinical studies have identified a plethora of mechanisms of antifolate-resistance; these are frequently associated with qualitative and/or quantitative alterations in influx and/or efflux transporters of (anti)folates as well as in folate-dependent enzymes. These include inactivating mutations and/or down-regulation of the RFC and various alterations in the target enzymes DHFR, TS and FPGS. Furthermore, it has been recently shown that members of the ATP-binding cassette (ABC) superfamily including multidrug resistance proteins (MRP/ABCC) and breast cancer resistance protein (BCRP/ABCG2) are low affinity, high capacity ATP-driven (anti)folate efflux transporters. This transport activity is in addition to their established facility to extrude multiple cytotoxic agents. Hence, by actively extruding antifolates, overexpressed MRPs and/or BCRP confer antifolate resistance. Moreover, down-regulation of MRPs and/or BCRP results in decreased folate efflux thereby leading to expansion of the intracellular folate pool and antifolate resistance. This chapter reviews and discusses the panoply of molecular modalities of antifolate-resistance in pre-clinical tumor cell systems in vitro and in vivo as well as in cancer patients. Currently emerging novel strategies for the overcoming of antifolate-resistance are presented. Finally, experimental evidence is provided that the identification and characterization of the molecular mechanisms of antifolate-resistance may prove instrumental in the future development of rationally-based novel antifolates and strategies that could conceivably overcome drug-resistance phenomena.
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ABSTRACT: Human organic anion-transporting polypeptide (OATP) 2B1 (OATP-B; SLCO2B1) is expressed in the apical membrane of the small intestine and the hepatocyte basolateral membrane and transports structurally diverse organic anions with a wide spectrum of pH sensitivities. This article describes highly pH-dependent OATP2B1-mediated antifolate transport and compares this property with that of sulfobromophthalein (BSP), a preferred OATP2B1 substrate. At pH 5.5 and low substrate concentrations (~2.5 μM), only [(3)H]pemetrexed influx [in contrast to methotrexate (MTX), folic acid, and reduced folates] could be detected in OATP2B1-transfected HeLa R1-11 cells that lack endogenous folate-specific transporters. Influx was optimal at pH 4.5 to 5.5, falling precipitously with an increase in pH >6.0; BSP influx was independent of pH. Influx of both substrates at low pH was markedly inhibited by the proton ionophore 4-(trifluoromethoxy)phenylhydrazone; BSP influx was also suppressed at pH 7.4. At 300 μM MTX, influx was one-third that of pemetrexed; influx of folic acid, (6S)5-methyltetrahydrofolate, or (6S)5-formyltetrahydrofolate was not detected. There were similar findings in OATP2B1-expressing Xenopus laevis oocytes. The pemetrexed influx K(m) was ~300 μM; the raltitrexed influx K(i) was ~70 μM at pH 5.5. Stable expression of OAPT2B1 in HeLa R1-11 cells resulted in substantial raltitrexed, but modest pemetrexed, growth inhibition consistent with their affinities for this carrier. Hence, OATP2B1 represents a low-affinity transport route for antifolates (relative affinities: raltitrexed > pemetrexed > MTX) at low pH. In contrast, the high affinity of this transporter for BSP relative to antifolates seems to be intrinsic to its binding site and independent of the proton concentration.Molecular pharmacology 02/2012; 81(2):134-42. DOI:10.1124/mol.111.074823 · 4.12 Impact Factor
- Research on Melanoma - A Glimpse into Current Directions and Future Trends, 09/2011; , ISBN: 978-953-307-293-7
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ABSTRACT: Over the past three decades, numerous reports have addressed several aspects of drug resistance phenomena. However, little is known regarding the impact that dietary components and nutritional supplements have on the mechanisms of resistance that malignant cells develop to chemotherapeutic agents. The increased fortification of cereals, grains and bread with folic acid (FA) has resulted in a marked rise in folate levels in blood and tissues. Vitamin fortification that includes FA is rather commonly used by cancer patients, but FA is also used to protect against pemetrexed induced side effects in the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer and mesothelioma or that of the antifolate methotrexate in rheumatoid arthritis. Moreover, the reduced folate leucovorin (LV, 5-formyltetrahydrofolate) is also used along with 5-fluorouracil in the treatment of colorectal cancer. Likewise, LV is used to reduce toxicity of methotrexate in the treatment of leukemia. FA can also increase efficacy of unrelated regimens, containing cisplatin. Hence there is growing evidence that dietary supplements as folic acid, can mimic, intensify, or attenuate the effects of unrelated chemotherapeutic agents. The aim of this review is to highlight some new insights in the cellular and molecular mechanisms affected by folate status, leading to chemotherapy resistance, especially towards antifolates in colorectal cancer treatment. This encompasses the effect of folate status on drug export, as well as on the increased expression of mutated target enzymes involved in folate metabolism and on the augmentation of cellular folate pools that impair polyglutamylation of antifolates, ultimately affecting treatment efficacy.Current Drug Metabolism 07/2011; 12(10):975-84. DOI:10.2174/138920011798062274 · 3.49 Impact Factor