Marcel B Bally

Langara College, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

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Publications (231)1079.53 Total impact

  • Cancer Research 08/2015; 75(15 Supplement):2902-2902. DOI:10.1158/1538-7445.AM2015-2902 · 9.33 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Standard treatment for advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) with no known driver mutation is platinum-based chemotherapy, which has a response rate of only 30-33%. Through an siRNA screen, 3'-phosphoadenosine 5'-phosphosulfate (PAPS) synthase 1 (PAPSS1), an enzyme that synthesizes the biologically active form of sulfate PAPS, was identified as a novel platinum-sensitizing target in NSCLC cells. PAPSS1 knockdown in combination with low-dose (IC10) cisplatin reduces clonogenicity of NSCLC cells by 98.7% (p < 0.001), increases DNA damage, and induces G1/S phase cell cycle arrest and apoptosis. PAPSS1 silencing also sensitized NSCLC cells to other DNA crosslinking agents, radiation, and topoisomerase I inhibitors, but not topoisomerase II inhibitors. Chemo-sensitization was not observed in normal epithelial cells. Knocking out the PAPSS1 homolog did not sensitize yeast to cisplatin, suggesting that sulfate bioavailability for amino acid synthesis is not the cause of sensitization to DNA damaging agents. Rather, sensitization may be due to sulfation reactions involved in blocking the action of DNA damaging agents, facilitating DNA repair, promoting cancer cell survival under therapeutic stress or reducing the bioavailability of DNA damaging agents. Our study demonstrates for the first time that PAPSS1 could be targeted to improve the activity of multiple anticancer agents used to treat NSCLC.
    Oncotarget 07/2015; 6(19):17161-77. DOI:10.18632/oncotarget.3635 · 6.36 Impact Factor
  • Jessica Kalra · Wieslawa Dragowska · Marcel B Bally
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    ABSTRACT: A small molecule inhibitor (QLT0267) targeting integrin-linked kinase is able to slow breast tumor growth in vivo; however, the mechanism of action remains unknown. Understanding how targeting molecules involved in intersecting signaling pathways impact disease is challenging. To facilitate this understanding, we used tumor tissue microarrays (TMA) and digital image analysis for quantification of immunohistochemistry (IHC) in order to investigate how QLT0267 affects signaling pathways in an orthotopic model of breast cancer over time. Female NCR nude mice were inoculated with luciferase-positive human breast tumor cells (LCC6(Luc)) and tumor growth was assessed by bioluminescent imaging (BLI). The plasma levels of QLT0267 were determined by LC-MS/MS methods following oral dosing of QLT0267 (200 mg/kg). A TMA was constructed using tumor tissue collected at 2, 4, 6, 24, 78 and 168 hr after treatment. IHC methods were used to assess changes in ILK-related signaling. The TMA was digitized, and Aperio ScanScope and ImageScope software were used to provide semi-quantitative assessments of staining levels. Using medium-throughput IHC quantitation, we show that ILK targeting by QLT0267 in vivo influences tumor physiology through transient changes in pathways involving AKT, GSK-3 and TWIST accompanied by the translocation of the pro-apoptotic protein BAD and an increase in Caspase-3 activity.
    Journal of Histochemistry and Cytochemistry 05/2015; 63(9). DOI:10.1369/0022155415587978 · 1.96 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A liposomal formulation of irinotecan, Irinophore C™ (IrC™) is efficacious in a panel of tumor models, normalizes tumor vasculature, and increases the accumulation of a second drug in the same tumor. We now show that Irinophore C™ is also effective against patient derived xenografts (PDX) of colon cancer, and examine the kinetics of vascular normalization in the HT-29 tumor model and assess how these changes might be used with 5-FU sequentially. Rag2M mice bearing HT-29 tumors were treated with IrC™ (25mg/kg; Q7D X 3) for up to three weeks. Groups of tumors were harvested for analysis at 7, 14 and 21days after the start of treatment. Drug and lipid levels in the tumor were evaluated using HPLC and scintillation counts, respectively. Changes in tumor morphology (H&E), vasculature (CD31), perfusion (Hoechst 33342) and apoptosis (TUNEL) were quantified using microscopy. The accumulation of a second drug ([(14)C]-5-FU, 40mg/kg) given 3hours before sacrifice was determined using liquid scintillation. The efficacy of IrC™ (Q7D x 3) followed by 5-FU treatment (Q7D x 3) was assessed in mice bearing established HT-29 tumors. The efficacy of IrC™ was also evaluated in primary human colorectal tumors grown orthotopically in NOD-SCID mice. Following a single dose of IrC™ the active lactone forms of irinotecan and its metabolite SN-38 were measurable in HT-29 tumors after 7days. The treatment reduced tumor cell density and increased apoptosis. Hoechst 33342 perfusion and accumulation of [(14)C]-5-FU in the treated tumors increased significantly on days 7 and 14. This was accompanied by an increase in the number of endothelial cells relative to total nuclei in the tumor sections. Pre-treatment with IrC™ (Q7D x 3) followed by 5-FU (Q7D x 3) delayed the time taken for tumors to reach 1cm(3) by 9days (p<0.05). IrC™ was just as effective as free irinotecan when used on patient derived xenografts of colorectal cancer. Treatment with IrC™ reduces tumor cell viability and appears to normalize the vascular function of the tumor after a single treatment cycle. A concomitant increase in the accumulation of a second drug (5-FU) in the tumor was observed in tumors from IrC™ treated animals and this was correlated with changes in vascular structure consistent with normalization. The treatment effects of sequential 5-FU dosing following IrC™ are additive with no additional toxicity in contrast to previous studies where concurrent 5-FU and IrC™ treatment exacerbated 5-FU toxicity. The studies with PDX tumors also indicate that IrC™ is just as effective as free irinotecan on PDX tumors even though the delivered dose is halved. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier B.V.
    Journal of Controlled Release 12/2014; 199. DOI:10.1016/j.jconrel.2014.11.031 · 7.71 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Irinotecan is a water-soluble camptothecin derivative with clinical activity against colorectal and small cell lung cancers and is currently a standard of care therapeutic in the treatment of colorectal cancer in combination with 5-fluorouracil. One of the major clinical issues limiting the use of irinotecan is gastrointestinal toxicity manifested as life-threatening diarrhea which is reported in up to 45 % of treated patients. The studies summarized here tested, in a rat model of irinotecan-associated gastro-intestinal toxicity, whether a lipid nanoparticle formulation of irinotecan, Irinophore C™, mitigated early-onset or late-onset diarrhea when given at doses equivalent to unformulated irinotecan that engenders both early- and late-onset diarrhea. Specifically, rats administered intravenously on two consecutive days with unformulated irinotecan at 170 mg/kg then 160 mg/kg experienced transient early-onset diarrhea after each administration and then experienced significant late-onset diarrhea peaking 4 days after treatment. Irinophore C™ given at the identical dose and schedule did not elicit either early- or late-onset diarrhea in any animals. When Irinophore C™ was combined with 5-fluorouracil there was also no early- or late-onset diarrhea observed. Histopathological analysis of the gastro-intestinal tract confirmed that the effects associated with irinotecan treatment were absent in rats given Irinophore C™ at the identical dose. Pharmacokinetic analysis demonstrated significantly higher systemic concentrations of irinotecan in rats given the nanoparticle formulation compared to those given unformulated irinotecan. These results demonstrate that the Irinophore C™ formulation is significantly less toxic than irinotecan, used either as a single agent or in combination with 5-fluorouracil, in a rat model of irinotecan-induced gastrointestinal toxicity.
    Investigational New Drugs 07/2014; 32(6). DOI:10.1007/s10637-014-0138-x · 2.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Triple negative breast cancers (TNBCs) are defined by a lack of expression of estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PR) and human epidermal growth factor receptor2 (ERBB2/HER2). Although initially responsive to chemotherapy, most recurrent TNBCs develop resistance, resulting in disease progression. Autophagy is a lysosome-mediated degradation and recycling process that can function as an adaptive survival response during chemotherapy and contribute to chemoresistance. Our goal was to determine whether autophagy inhibition improves treatment efficacy in TNBC cells in tumors either sensitive or refractory to anthracyclines. We employed in vitro and in vivo models of TNBC using cell lines sensitive to epirubicin (EPI) and other anthracyclines, as well as derivative lines, resistant to the same drugs. We assessed basal autophagy levels and the effects of chemotherapy on autophagy in parental and resistant cells. Applying various approaches to inhibit autophagy alone and in combination with chemotherapy, we assessed the effects on cell viability in vitro and tumor growth rates in vivo. We demonstrated that EPI induced autophagic flux in TNBC cells. EPI- resistant lines exhibited at least 1.5 fold increased basal autophagy levels and, when treated with autophagy inhibitors, showed a significant loss in viability, indicating dependence of resistant cells on autophagy for survival. Combination of EPI with the autophagy inhibitor hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) resulted in a significant reduction in tumor growth compared to monotherapy with EPI. Autophagy inhibition enhances therapeutic response in both anthracycline-sensitive and resistant TNBC and may be an effective new treatment strategy for this disease.
    Clinical Cancer Research 04/2014; 20(12). DOI:10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-13-2060 · 8.72 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Epithelial ovarian cancers are a group of at least five histologically and clinically distinct diseases, yet at this time patients with these different diseases are all treated with the same platinum and taxane-based chemotherapeutic regimen. With increased knowledge of histotype-specific differences that correlate with treatment responses and resistance, novel treatment strategies will be developed for each distinct disease. Type-specific or resistance-driven molecularly targeted agents will provide some specificity over traditional chemotherapies and it is argued here that nanoscaled drug delivery systems, in particular lipid-based formulations, have the potential to improve the delivery and specificity of pathway-specific drugs and broad-spectrum cytotoxic chemotherapeutics. An overview of the current understanding of ovarian cancers and the evolving clinical management of these diseases is provided. This overview is needed as it provides the context for understanding the current role of drug delivery systems in the treatment of ovarian cancer and the need to design formulations for treatment of clinically distinct forms of ovarian cancer.
    Nanomedicine 03/2014; 9(3):501-22. DOI:10.2217/nnm.13.220 · 5.41 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Gefitinib (Iressa(®), ZD1839) is a small molecule inhibitor of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) tyrosine kinase. We report on an early cellular response to gefitinib that involves induction of functional autophagic flux in phenotypically diverse breast cancer cells that were sensitive (BT474 and SKBR3) or insensitive (MCF7-GFPLC3 and JIMT-1) to gefitinib. Our data show that elevation of autophagy in gefitinib-treated breast cancer cells correlated with downregulation of AKT and ERK1/2 signaling early in the course of treatment. Inhibition of autophagosome formation by BECLIN-1 or ATG7 siRNA in combination with gefitinib reduced the abundance of autophagic organelles and sensitized SKBR3 but not MCF7-GFPLC3 cells to cell death. However, inhibition of the late stage of gefitinib-induced autophagy with hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) or bafilomycin A1 significantly increased (p<0.05) cell death in gefitinib-sensitive SKBR3 and BT474 cells, as well as in gefitinib-insensitive JIMT-1 and MCF7-GFPLC3 cells, relative to the effects observed with the respective single agents. Treatment with the combination of gefitinib and HCQ was more effective (p<0.05) in delaying tumor growth than either monotherapy (p>0.05), when compared to vehicle-treated controls. Our results also show that elevated autophagosome content following short-term treatment with gefitinib is a reversible response that ceases upon removal of the drug. In aggregate, these data demonstrate that elevated autophagic flux is an early response to gefitinib and that targeting EGFR and autophagy should be considered when developing new therapeutic strategies for EGFR expressing breast cancers.
    PLoS ONE 10/2013; 8(10):e76503. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0076503 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is highly resistant to chemotherapy. It has been described as requiring elevated autophagy for growth and inhibiting autophagy has been proposed as a treatment strategy. To date, all preclinical reports and clinical trials investigating pharmacological inhibition of autophagy have used chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine, which interfere with lysosomal function and block autophagy at a late stage. Verteporfin is a newly discovered autophagy inhibitor that blocks autophagy at an early stage by inhibiting autophagosome formation. Here we report that PDAC cell lines show variable sensitivity to verteporfin in vitro, suggesting cell-line specific autophagy dependence. Using image-based and molecular analyses, we show that verteporfin inhibits autophagy stimulated by gemcitabine, the current standard treatment for PDAC. Pharmacokinetic and efficacy studies in a BxPC-3 xenograft mouse model demonstrated that verteporfin accumulated in tumors at autophagy-inhibiting levels and inhibited autophagy in vivo, but did not reduce tumor volume or increase survival as a single agent. In combination with gemcitabine verteporfin moderately reduced tumor growth and enhanced survival compared to gemcitabine alone. While our results do not uphold the premise that autophagy inhibition might be widely effective against PDAC as a single-modality treatment, they do support autophagy inhibition as an approach to sensitize PDAC to gemcitabine.
    Journal of Cancer 08/2013; 4(7):585-96. DOI:10.7150/jca.7030 · 3.27 Impact Factor
  • Cancer Research 08/2013; 73(8 Supplement):4362-4362. DOI:10.1158/1538-7445.AM2013-4362 · 9.33 Impact Factor
  • Cancer Research 08/2013; 73(8 Supplement):4469-4469. DOI:10.1158/1538-7445.AM2013-4469 · 9.33 Impact Factor
  • Cancer Research 08/2013; 73(8 Supplement):1684-1684. DOI:10.1158/1538-7445.AM2013-1684 · 9.33 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To investigate the use of liposomal irinotecan (Irinophore C™) plus or minus 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) for the treatment of colorectal cancer. The effect of irinotecan (IRI) and/or 5-FU exposure times on cytotoxicity was assessed in vitro against HT-29 or LS174T human colon carcinoma cells. The pharmacokinetics and biodistribution of Irinophore C™ (IrC™) and 5-FU, administered alone or in combination, were compared in vivo. A subcutaneous model of HT-29 human colorectal cancer in Rag2-M mice was utilized to assess the efficacy of IrC™ alone, and in combination with 5-FU. The cytotoxicity of IRI and 5-FU were strongly dependent on exposure time. Synergistic interactions were observed following prolonged exposure to IRI/5-FU combinations. Pharmacokinetics/biodistribution studies demonstrated that the 5-FU elimination rate was decreased significantly when 5-FU was co-administered intravenously with IrC™, versus alone. Significant decreases in 5-FU elimination were also observed in plasma, with an associated increase of 5-FU in some tissues when 5-FU was given by intraperitoneal injection and IrC™ was given intravenously. The elimination of IrC™ was not significantly different when administered alone or in combination with 5-FU. Therapeutic studies demonstrated that single agent IrC™ was significantly more effective than the combination of IRI/5-FU; surprisingly, IrC™/5-FU combinations were no more effective than IrC™ alone. The administration of combinations of 5-FU (16 mg/kg) and IrC™ (60 mg IRI/kg) showed increased toxicity when compared to IrC™ alone. Treatment with IrC™ alone (60 mg IRI/kg) delayed the time required for a 5-fold increase in initial tumor volume to day 49, compared to day 23 for controls. When IrC™ (40 mg IRI/kg) was used in combination with 5-FU (16 mg/kg), the time to increase tumor volume 5-fold was 43 days, which was comparable to that achieved when using IrC™ alone (40 mg IRI/kg). Single agent IrC™ was well tolerated and has significant therapeutic potential. IrC™ may be a suitable replacement for IRI treatment, but its use with free 5-FU is complicated by IrC™-engendered changes in 5-FU pharmacokinetics/biodistribution which are associated with increased toxicity when using the combination.
    PLoS ONE 04/2013; 8(4):e62349. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0062349 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Advances in cancer therapy have increased the rate of survival of young cancer patients; however, female lymphoma patients frequently face a temporary or permanent loss of fertility when treated with traditional cytotoxic agents. The potential loss of fertility is an important concern that can influence treatment decisions for many premenopausal cancer patients. The negative effect of chemotherapeutic agents and treatment protocols to patients' fertility-referred to as fertotoxicity-are thus an increasingly important cancer survivorship issue. We have developed a novel nanoscale formulation of arsenic trioxide, a potent drug for treatment of hematological malignancies, and demonstrate that it has significantly better activity in a murine lymphoma model than the free drug. In parallel, we have developed a novel in vitro assay of ovarian follicle function that predicts in vivo ovarian toxicity of therapeutic agents. Our results reveal that the nanotherapeutic agent is not only more active against lymphoma, but is fertoprotective, i.e., it is much less deleterious to ovarian function than the parent drug. Thus, our in vitro assay allows rapid evaluation of both established and experimental anticancer drugs on ovarian reserve and can inform the selection of efficacious and fertility-sparing treatment regimens for reproductive-age women diagnosed with cancer.
    PLoS ONE 03/2013; 8(3):e58491. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0058491 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The PI3K/AKT/mTOR pathway is commonly over activated in glioblastoma (GBM), and Rictor was shown to be an important regulator downstream of this pathway. EGFR overexpression is also frequently found in GBM tumors, and both EGFR and Rictor are associated with increased proliferation, invasion, metastasis and poor prognosis. This research evaluated in vitro and in vivo whether the combined silencing of EGFR and Rictor would result in therapeutic benefits. The therapeutic potential of targeting these proteins in combination with conventional agents with proven activity in GBM patients was also assessed. In vitro validation studies were carried out using siRNA-based gene silencing methods in a panel of three commercially available human GBM cell lines, including two PTEN mutant lines (U251MG and U118MG) and one PTEN-wild type line (LN229). The impact of EGFR and/or Rictor silencing on cell migration and sensitivity to chemotherapeutic drugs in vitro was determined. In vivo validation of these studies was focused on EGFR and/or Rictor silencing achieved using doxycycline-inducible shRNA-expressing U251MG cells implanted orthotopically in Rag2M mice brains. Target silencing, tumor size and tumor cell proliferation were assessed by quantification of immunohistofluorescence-stained markers. siRNA-mediated silencing of EGFR and Rictor reduced U251MG cell migration and increased sensitivity of the cells to irinotecan, temozolomide and vincristine. In LN229, co-silencing of EGFR and Rictor resulted in reduced cell migration, and increased sensitivity to vincristine and temozolomide. In U118MG, silencing of Rictor alone was sufficient to increase this line's sensitivity to vincristine and temozolomide. In vivo, while the silencing of EGFR or Rictor alone had no significant effect on U251MG tumor growth, silencing of EGFR and Rictor together resulted in a complete eradication of tumors. These data suggest that the combined silencing of EGFR and Rictor should be an effective means of treating GBM.
    PLoS ONE 03/2013; 8(3):e59597. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0059597 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose: To provide proof-of-concept data to support use of Doxil-liposomal topotecan (Topophore C) combinations to treat ovarian cancer. Experimental design: ES-2, OVCAR-3, and SKOV-3 ovarian cancer cell lines were treated with doxorubicin-topotecan combinations by exposing the cells to drugs from 1 to 72 hours. Pharmacokinetic analysis was conducted following administration of liposomal formulations of these drugs alone and in combination. Efficacy assessments were completed in ES-2 and SKOV-3 ovarian cancer models. Results: On the basis of drug doses capable of achieving 50% reduction in cell viability over 72 hours, doxorubicin-topotecan combinations were additive in SKOV-3 but highly synergistic in ES-2 and OVCAR-3 cells. Favorable drug-drug interactions increased with increased drug exposure time. Topophore C pharmacokinetic remained unaffected when co-administered with Doxil. In the ES-2 model, Doxil at maximum tolerated dose (MTD 7.5 mg/kg) in combination with free topotecan (MTD 15 mg/kg) did not enhance median survival time (MST) over that achieved with topotecan alone. In contrast, MST was increased to 52 days with combination of Topophore C (MTD 2.5 mg/kg) and Doxil (7.5 mg/kg) compared with untreated animals (MST 18 days) or those treated with Topophore C alone (MTD 5 mg/kg, MST 40 days). In the SKOV-3 model, combination treatments showed better therapeutic efficacy than the individual drugs. Conclusions: Topotecan-doxorubicin combinations produced additive or synergistic effects which were best achieved when the tumor cells were exposed to drugs over extended time. Doxil-Topophore C combinations are therapeutically superior as judged in two ovarian cancer models. Clin Cancer Res; 19(4); 865-77. ©2012 AACR.
    Clinical Cancer Research 01/2013; 19(4). DOI:10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-12-2459 · 8.72 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Polyethylene glycol (PEG) has been used widely in liposomal formulations as a strategy to inhibit opsonization by plasma proteins and to prolong liposome plasma circulation time. PEG can be incorporated onto the surface of liposomes either during the spontaneous self-assembling process or inserted after vesicle formation. The advantages of employing the PEG postinsertion method include improved drug encapsulation efficiency and the ability to incorporate PEG conjugates for enhanced cell binding and uptake. In this study, we propose to evaluate a cationic lipid nanoparticle formulation containing two PEGylation steps: pre- and post-siRNA insertion. Our results indicate that formulations consisting of the extra PEG post-insertion step significantly increased siRNA circulation in the plasma by two-folds in comparison with the formulations consisting of only the single PEGylation step. Moreover, this formulation was able to efficiently carry siRNA to the tumor site, increase siRNA stability and significantly downregulate luciferase mRNA expression by >50% when compared with the controls in an intraperitoneal and subcutaneous breast cancer tumor model. Overall, our cationic lipid nanoparticle formulation displayed enhanced plasma circulation, reduced liver accumulation, enhanced tumor targeting, and effective gene knockdown--demonstrating excellent utility for the delivery of siRNA. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. and the American Pharmacists Association J Pharm Sci.
    Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences 01/2013; 102(1). DOI:10.1002/jps.23351 · 2.59 Impact Factor
  • Cancer Research 06/2012; 72(8 Supplement):5261-5261. DOI:10.1158/1538-7445.AM2012-5261 · 9.33 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This study focuses on determining the pharmacokinetics, biodistribution, and efficacy of the ginsenoside aglycone protopanaxadiol (aPPD) administered as a single agent in a novel oral dosage formulation. To obtain these data and to characterize the stability of aPPD, appropriate analytical assay development was carried out. The solubility and stability of aPPD were determined, and the compound was formulated for oral gavage. aPPD levels in blood and tissues following oral administration to nu/nu nude mice were determined using liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry/mass spectrometry. The efficacy of aPPD was determined upon oral administration to nu/nu nude mice bearing PC-3 human prostate cancer xenograft tumors. Immunohistochemical analysis of tumor tissues was performed to establish apoptotic indices and Ki-67 expression as markers of proliferation. The maximum solubility of aPPD in ethanol was 68.4 mg/ml. aPPD administered at a dose of 70 mg/kg yielded a T(max) of approximately 40 min and a C(max) value of 3.9 ± 1.4 μg/ml, and no toxicity was observed. aPPD accumulated largely in the stomach and small intestine and was also present in the brain. This dose engendered a significant delay in PC-3 tumor growth, an increase in apoptotic index, and a decrease in Ki-67 levels. We have shown that aPPD is a stable compound that can be formulated for oral gavage. Pharmacokinetic studies demonstrate the ability of this compound to be absorbed after oral administration. Future studies will assess the activity and pharmacokinetics of aPPD when administered in combination with standard chemotherapy.
    Anti-cancer drugs 06/2012; 23(5):543-52. DOI:10.1097/CAD.0b013e32835006f5 · 1.78 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We have recently developed a liposomal nanoparticle (LNP) formulation of irinotecan based on loading method that involves formation of a complex between copper and the water soluble camptothecin. The loading methodology developed for irinotecan was evaluated to develop a LNP topotecan formulation (referred to herein as Topophore C) and test its activity in pre-clinical model of ovarian carcinoma. Topotecan was encapsulated into preformed liposomes containing 300 mM copper sulfate and the divalent metal ionophore A23187. Formulation optimization studies included assessments of loading efficiency, influence of temperature on drug loading and in vitro stability of the resulting formulation. In vivo assessments included drug and liposome pharmacokinetics, drug levels within plasma and the peritoneal cavity following intravenous (i.v.) administration in mice and efficacy studies on ES2 ovarian cancer model. Topotecan loading into liposomes was optimized with encapsulation efficiency of >98 % at a final drug-to-lipid (D/L) mole ratio of 0.1. Higher D/L ratios could be achieved, but the resulting formulations were less stable as judged by in vitro drug release studies. Following Topophore C administration in mice the topotecan plasma half-life and AUC were increased compared to free topotecan by 10-and 22-fold, respectively. Topophore C was 2-to 3-fold more toxic than free topotecan, however showed significantly better anti-tumor activity than free topotecan administered at doses with no observable toxic effects. Topophore C is a therapeutically interesting drug candidate and we are particularly interested in developing its use in combination with liposomal doxorubicin for treatment of platinum refractory ovarian cancer.
    Investigational New Drugs 05/2012; 31(1). DOI:10.1007/s10637-012-9832-8 · 2.92 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

10k Citations
1,079.53 Total Impact Points


  • 2015
    • Langara College
      Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  • 1983–2015
    • University of British Columbia - Vancouver
      • • Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
      • • Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences
      • • Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
      • • Faculty of Medicine
      Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  • 2006–2013
    • BC Cancer Agency
      Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  • 2004–2013
    • BC Cancer Research Centre
      • Department of Experimental Therapeutics
      Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  • 2007
    • National University of Singapore
      • Department of Pharmacy
      Singapore, Singapore
    • Duke University
      • Department of Biomedical Engineering (BME)
      Durham, NC, United States
  • 2005
    • Cambridge Institute for Medical Research
      Cambridge, England, United Kingdom
  • 1994
    • Roswell Park Cancer Institute
      Buffalo, New York, United States
  • 1987
    • Terry Fox Laboratory
      Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada