Src activation in melanoma and Src inhibitors as therapeutic agents in melanoma

Cutaneous Oncology, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, Florida 33612, USA.
Melanoma research (Impact Factor: 2.28). 07/2009; 19(3):167-75. DOI: 10.1097/CMR.0b013e328304974c
Source: PubMed


Src signaling has been implicated in several malignancies including melanoma. The prevalence of Src activation in human melanoma and the effect of the newer Src inhibitors, dasatinib, and bosutinib (SKI-606), as single agents or in combination, on melanoma cell lines is not well established. In the melanoma cell lines, A-375, SK-Mel-5, and SK-Mel-28, activity of Src inhibitors was assessed alone or in combination with standard chemotherapy agents; 50% growth inhibitory concentration was determined by MTS assay and immunoblotting was used to measure Src activation and downstream signaling. Staining for Src activation was measured by Src-phosphotyrosine 416. Immunohistochemistry was performed on primary cutaneous, mucosal, and metastatic melanoma. Src inhibitors blocked the growth of melanoma cell lines; furthermore, Src inhibitor treatment was synergized with cisplatin but not temozolomide or paclitaxel. Treatment with dasatanib increased the levels of pS473 Akt in A-375 melanoma cells but not in the other two cell lines. Forty-eight percent (17 of 35) of all melanoma stained weakly, moderately, or strongly for pY416 Src: cutaneous 61% (eight of 13), mucosal 31% (four of 13), metastatic 55% (five of nine). Most positive biopsies stained weakly and only one metastatic melanoma specimen stained strongly for Src-phosphotyrosine 416. pY416 Src is expressed in cutaneous, mucosal, and metastatic melanoma in various degrees. Src inhibitors may be a promising therapy in melanoma, either by themselves or in combination with chemotherapy (especially with platinum compounds) or inhibitors of the Akt/PI3k pathway.

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    • "The cytocidal activity of E6201, however, may also reflect the “multi-target” nature of E6201, such that the cell death observed is due to inhibition of other cancer-specific kinases, such as Src [36]. Indeed, while treatment of melanoma cell lines with the Src inhibitor dasatinib has been shown to inhibit proliferation and invasion [37,38], in some melanoma cell lines it did induce apoptosis [39]. Although clinical responses have been seen in a subset of patients in Phase I and II trials of Dasatinib, biomarkers that predict sensitivity have not yet been identified [40,41]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background Melanoma is the most lethal form of skin cancer, but recent advances in molecularly targeted agents against the Ras/Raf/MAPK pathway demonstrate promise as effective therapies. Despite these advances, resistance remains an issue, as illustrated recently by the clinical experience with vemurafenib. Such acquired resistance appears to be the result of parallel pathway activation, such as PI3K, to overcome single-agent inhibition. In this report, we describe the cytotoxicity and anti-tumour activity of the novel MEK inhibitor, E6201, in a broad panel of melanoma cell lines (n = 31) of known mutational profile in vitro and in vivo. We further test the effectiveness of combining E6201 with an inhibitor of PI3K (LY294002) in overcoming resistance in these cell lines. Results The majority of melanoma cell lines were either sensitive (IC50 < 500 nM, 24/31) or hypersensitive (IC50 < 100 nM, 18/31) to E6201. This sensitivity correlated with wildtype PTEN and mutant BRAF status, whereas mutant RAS and PI3K pathway activation were associated with resistance. Although MEK inhibitors predominantly exert a cytostatic effect, E6201 elicited a potent cytocidal effect on most of the sensitive lines studied, as evidenced by Annexin positivity and cell death ELISA. Conversely, E6201 did not induce cell death in the two resistant melanoma cell lines tested. E6201 inhibited xenograft tumour growth in all four melanoma cell lines studied to varying degrees, but a more pronounced anti-tumour effect was observed for cell lines that previously demonstrated a cytocidal response in vitro. In vitro combination studies of E6201 and LY294002 showed synergism in all six melanoma cell lines tested, as defined by a mean combination index < 1. Conclusions Our data demonstrate that E6201 elicits a predominantly cytocidal effect in vitro and in vivo in melanoma cells of diverse mutational background. Resistance to E6201 was associated with disruption of PTEN and activation of downstream PI3K signalling. In keeping with these data we demonstrate that co-inhibition of MAPK and PI3K is effective in overcoming resistance inherent in melanoma.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2012 · Molecular Cancer
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    • "In addition to its single agent activity, cell-culture experiments have demonstrated an antiproliferative synergy between dasatinib and chemotherapeutic agents including cisplatin (Homsi et al, 2009) and temozolomide (Eustace et al, 2008) in c-Kit wild-type melanoma. Dacarbazine is a commonly employed alkylating agent with single-agent activity in advanced melanoma (Luikart et al, 1984; Chapman et al, 1999; Middleton et al, 2000; Schadendorf et al, 2006). "
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    ABSTRACT: Src inhibitors sensitise melanoma cells to chemotherapy in preclinical models. The combination of dasatinib and dacarbazine was tested in a phase I trial in melanoma. Patients had ECOG performance status 0-2 and normal organ function. Dacarbazine was administered on day 1 and dasatinib on day 2 through 19 of each 21-day cycle. Both were escalated from 50 mg b.i.d. of dasatinib and 800 mg m(-2) of dacarbazine. Available pre-treatment biopsies were sequenced for BRAF, NRAS, and C-Kit mutations. Dose-limiting toxicity was reached at dasatinib 70 mg b.i.d./dacarbazine 1000 mg m(-2), and was predominantly haematological. In 29 patients receiving dasatinib 70 mg b.i.d., the objective response rate (ORR) was 13.8%, the clinical benefit rate (ORR+SD) was 72.4%, the 6-month progression-free survival (PFS) was 20.7%, and the 12-month overall survival (OS) was 34.5%. Two out of three patients who were wild type for BRAF, NRAS, and c-KIT mutations had confirmed partial responses, and one had a minor response. The recommended phase II dose is dasatinib 70 mg b.i.d with dacarbazine 800 mg m(-2). PFS and OS data for dasatinib at 70 mg b.i.d. with dacarbazine compared favourably with historical controls. Preliminary data support evaluating tumour mutation status further as a biomarker of response.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2011 · British Journal of Cancer
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    • "Previous reports have shown that dasatinib has no major effects on the proliferation of melanoma cells , with a maximum 40 – 50% growth inhibition observed in the most sensitive cell lines for concentrations of the drug up to 5 mM ( Buettner et al , 2008 ; Eustace et al , 2008 ; Homsi et al , 2009 ) . Saracatinib showed a growth inhibitory activity on melanoma cell lines that was comparable to dasatinib , with two cell lines showing resistance to this drug , one cell line having a marginal sensitivity and two cell lines showing moderate sensitivity . "
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    ABSTRACT: CRIPTO-1 (CR-1) is involved in the pathogenesis and progression of human carcinoma of different histological origin. In this study we addressed the expression and the functional role of CR-1 in cutaneous melanoma. Expression of CR-1 protein in melanomas and melanoma cell lines was assessed by immunohistochemistry, western blotting and/or flow cytometry. Levels of mRNA were evaluated by real-time PCR. Invasion assays were performed in Matrigel-coated modified Boyden chambers. Expression of CR-1 protein and/or mRNA was found in 16 out of 37 primary human cutaneous melanomas and in 12 out of 21 melanoma cell lines. Recombinant CR-1 protein activated in melanoma cells c-Src and, at lesser extent, Smad signalling. In addition, CR-1 significantly increased the invasive ability of melanoma cells that was prevented by treatment with either the ALK4 inhibitor SB-431542 or the c-Src inhibitor saracatinib (AZD0530). Anti-CR-1 siRNAs produced a significant inhibition of the growth and the invasive ability of melanoma cells. Finally, a close correlation was found in melanoma cells between the levels of expression of CR-1 and the effects of saracatinib on cell growth. These data indicate that a significant fraction of cutaneous melanoma expresses CR-1 and that this growth factor is involved in the invasion and proliferation of melanoma cells.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2011 · British Journal of Cancer
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