[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Despite vast improvements in our understanding of cancer genetics, a large percentage of cancer cases present without knowledge of the causative genetic events. Tyrosine kinases are frequently implicated in the pathogenesis of numerous types of cancer, but identification and validation of tyrosine kinase targets in cancer can be a time-consuming process. We report the establishment of an efficient, functional screening assay using RNAi technology to directly assess and compare the effect of individually targeting each member of the tyrosine kinase family. We demonstrate that siRNA screening can identify tyrosine kinase targets containing activating mutations in Janus kinase (JAK) 3 (A572V) in CMK cells and c-KIT (V560G) in HMC1.1 cells. In addition, this assay identifies targets that do not contain mutations, such as JAK1 and the focal adhesion kinases (FAK), that are crucial to the survival of the cancer cells. This technique, with additional development, might eventually offer the potential to match specific therapies with individual patients based on a functional assay.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Activated tyrosine kinases have been frequently implicated in the pathogenesis of cancer, including acute myeloid leukemia (AML), and are validated targets for therapeutic intervention with small-molecule kinase inhibitors. To identify novel activated tyrosine kinases in AML, we used a discovery platform consisting of immunoaffinity profiling coupled to mass spectrometry that identifies large numbers of tyrosine-phosphorylated proteins, including active kinases. This method revealed the presence of an activated colony-stimulating factor 1 receptor (CSF1R) kinase in the acute megakaryoblastic leukemia (AMKL) cell line MKPL-1. Further studies using siRNA and a small-molecule inhibitor showed that CSF1R is essential for the growth and survival of MKPL-1 cells. DNA sequence analysis of cDNA generated by 5'RACE from CSF1R coding sequences identified a novel fusion of the RNA binding motif 6 (RBM6) gene to CSF1R gene generated presumably by a t(3;5)(p21;q33) translocation. Expression of the RBM6-CSF1R fusion protein conferred interleukin-3 (IL-3)-independent growth in BaF3 cells, and induces a myeloid proliferative disease (MPD) with features of megakaryoblastic leukemia in a murine transplant model. These findings identify a novel potential therapeutic target in leukemogenesis, and demonstrate the utility of phosphoproteomic strategies for discovery of tyrosine kinase alleles.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The 8p11 myeloproliferative syndrome (EMS) is associated with translocations that disrupt the FGFR1 gene. To date, 8 fusion partners of FGFR1 have been identified. However, no primary leukemia cell lines were identified that contain any of these fusions. Here, we screened more than 40 acute myeloid leukemia cell lines for constitutive phosphorylation of STAT5 and applied an immunoaffinity profiling strategy to identify tyrosine-phosphorylated proteins in the KG-1 cell line. Mass spectrometry analysis of KG-1 cells revealed aberrant tyrosine phosphorylation of FGFR1. Subsequent analysis led to the identification of a fusion of the FGFR1OP2 gene to the FGFR1 gene. Small interfering RNA (siRNA) against FGFR1 specifically inhibited the growth and induced apoptosis of KG-1 cells. Thus, the KG-1 cell line provides an in vitro model for the study of FGFR1 fusions associated with leukemia and for the analysis of small molecule inhibitors against FGFR1 fusions.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: STAT5 is constitutively phosphorylated in leukemic cells in approximately 70% of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients. To identify kinase candidates potentially responsible for STAT5 phosphorylation, we used liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) mass spectrometry to detect phosphoproteins in AML cell lines. We established TEL-ARG and BCR-ABL fusion proteins as the mechanism underlying STAT5 phosphorylation in HT-93 and KBM-3 cells, respectively. In addition, we identified a JAK2 pseudokinase domain mutation in HEL cells and using siRNA downregulation, established JAK2 as the kinase responsible for phosphorylating STAT5. This study illustrates the benefit of LC-MS/MS mass spectrometry and siRNA for the identification of novel targets and mutations.
Leukemia Research 10/2006; 30(9):1097-104. · 2.76 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Tyrosine kinases are aberrantly activated in numerous malignancies, including acute myeloid leukemia (AML). To identify tyrosine kinases activated in AML, we developed a screening strategy that rapidly identifies tyrosine-phosphorylated proteins using mass spectrometry. This allowed the identification of an activating mutation (A572V) in the JAK3 pseudokinase domain in the acute megakaryoblastic leukemia (AMKL) cell line CMK. Subsequent analysis identified two additional JAK3 alleles, V722I and P132T, in AMKL patients. JAK3(A572V), JAK3(V722I), and JAK3(P132T) each transform Ba/F3 cells to factor-independent growth, and JAK3(A572V) confers features of megakaryoblastic leukemia in a murine model. These findings illustrate the biological importance of gain-of-function JAK3 mutations in leukemogenesis and demonstrate the utility of proteomic approaches to identifying clinically relevant mutations.
Cancer Cell 08/2006; 10(1):65-75. · 24.76 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) is effectively treated with imatinib. However, reactivation of Bcr-Abl via kinase domain mutations that reduce sensitivity to imatinib can cause relapse. As combination therapy is frequently used to prevent emergence of resistance, the combination of imatinib with an inhibitor of imatinib-resistant Bcr-Abl mutants (e.g., Src/Abl inhibitors AP23848 and BMS-354825) was investigated.
To test this approach, cellular proliferation and Bcr-Abl tyrosine phosphorylation assays were done on Ba/F3 cells expressing wild-type (WT) Bcr-Abl and four common imatinib-resistant mutants (Y253F, E255K, T315I, and M351T). Colony-forming assays with primary CML cells were also done.
Both Src/Abl inhibitors retained full inhibitory capacity when coadministered with imatinib at concentrations above typical clinical levels. For cells expressing WT Bcr-Abl or the marginally imatinib-resistant mutant M351T, inclusion of imatinib at therapeutic levels enhanced the effects of the Src/Abl inhibitors. By comparison, for the highly imatinib-resistant mutants Y253F and E255K, inclusion of imatinib at clinical levels resulted in only a slight enhancement beyond the effects of the Src/Abl inhibitors. None of the inhibitors affected Bcr-Abl T315I cells. Colony-forming assays with primary CML cells yielded analogous results.
Our results indicate that Src/Abl inhibitors are compatible with imatinib and suggest that combined Abl inhibitor therapy is a feasible treatment strategy for patients with CML.
Clinical Cancer Research 11/2005; 11(19 Pt 1):6987-93. · 7.84 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Imatinib, a Bcr-Abl tyrosine kinase inhibitor, is a highly effective therapy for patients with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML). Despite durable responses in most chronic phase patients, relapses have been observed and are much more prevalent in patients with advanced disease. The most common mechanism of acquired imatinib resistance has been traced to Bcr-Abl kinase domain mutations with decreased imatinib sensitivity. Thus, alternate Bcr-Abl kinase inhibitors that have activity against imatinib-resistant mutants would be useful for patients who relapse on imatinib therapy. Two such Bcr-Abl inhibitors are currently being evaluated in clinical trials: the improved potency, selective Abl inhibitor AMN107 and the highly potent dual Src/Abl inhibitor BMS-354825. In the current article, we compared imatinib, AMN107, and BMS-354825 in cellular and biochemical assays against a panel of 16 kinase domain mutants representing >90% of clinical isolates. We report that AMN107 and BMS-354825 are 20-fold and 325-fold more potent than imatinib against cells expressing wild-type Bcr-Abl and that similar improvements are maintained for all imatinib-resistant mutants tested, with the exception of T315I. Thus, both inhibitors hold promise for treating imatinib-refractory CML.
Cancer Research 06/2005; 65(11):4500-5. · 8.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: FMS-like tyrosine kinase 3 (FLT3) is a receptor tyrosine kinase that is constitutively activated in approximately 30% of acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) patients and appears to confer an adverse prognosis. Thus, development of inhibitors and/or antibodies that specifically target FLT3 has been of substantial interest. In this regard, phase 1 and 2 trials involving FLT3 inhibitors have recently reported FLT3 inhibition and leukemic blast reduction in some patients. Despite this, issues such as specificity and resistance need to be addressed. Consequently, the development of alternative approaches for targeting FLT3 would be of great consequence. In the present report, we demonstrate that FLT3 siRNA effectively down-regulates FLT3 expression in Ba/F3 cells transfected with FLT3 containing an activating internal tandem duplication (ITD) in the juxtamembrane domain and FLT3-ITD-positive Molm-14 human leukemia cells. Treatment with the FLT3 siRNA results in growth inhibition and apoptosis of these cells. Furthermore, siRNA-induced down-regulation of FLT3 increased the sensitivity of both cell lines to treatment with the FLT3 inhibitor MLN518. This illustrates the potential benefit of combined therapeutic approaches.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Abl inhibitor imatinib is a highly effective therapy for patients with chronic myeloid leukemia. Relapses are relatively uncommon in newly diagnosed patients, but are the rule in patients with more advanced disease. Mutations in the BCR-ABL gene are the most common cause of relapse. Working from the imatinib chemical structure, a higher-affinity family member, AMN107, was designed. AMN107 is approximately 20-fold more potent than imatinib, and this translates into improved inhibitory activity against most of the common BCR-ABL mutations. The implications of these results, and the potential role this and other novel ABL inhibitors may have in treating patients with CML, are discussed.
Cancer Cell 03/2005; 7(2):117-9. · 24.76 Impact Factor