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Antagonists of MDM2-p53 interaction are emerging anti-cancer drugs utilized in clinical trials for malignancies that rarely mutate p53, including melanoma. We discovered that MDM2-p53 antagonists protect DNA from drug-induced damage in melanoma cells and patient-derived xenografts. Among the tested DNA damaging drugs were various inhibitors of Aurora and Polo-like mitotic kinases, as well as traditional chemotherapy. Mitotic kinase inhibition causes mitotic slippage, DNA re-replication, and polyploidy. Here we show that re-replication of the polyploid genome generates replicative stress which leads to DNA damage. MDM2-p53 antagonists relieve replicative stress via the p53-dependent activation of p21 which inhibits DNA replication. Loss of p21 promoted drug-induced DNA damage in melanoma cells and enhanced anti-tumor activity of therapy combining MDM2 antagonist with mitotic kinase inhibitor in mice. In summary, MDM2 antagonists may reduce DNA damaging effects of anti-cancer drugs if they are administered together, while targeting p21 can improve the efficacy of such combinations.
Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.
Constitutive WNT activity drives the growth of various human tumors, including nearly all colorectal cancers (CRCs). Despite this prominence in cancer, no WNT inhibitor is currently approved for use in the clinic largely due to the small number of druggable signaling components in the WNT pathway and the substantial toxicity to normal gastrointestinal tissue. We have shown that pyrvinium, which activates casein kinase 1α (CK1α), is a potent inhibitor of WNT signaling. However, its poor bioavailability limited the ability to test this first-in-class WNT inhibitor in vivo. We characterized a novel small-molecule CK1α activator called SSTC3, which has better pharmacokinetic properties than pyrvinium, and found that it inhibited the growth of CRC xenografts in mice. SSTC3 also attenuated the growth of a patient-derived metastatic CRC xenograft, for which few therapies exist. SSTC3 exhibited minimal gastrointestinal toxicity compared to other classes of WNT inhibitors. Consistent with this observation, we showed that the abundance of the SSTC3 target, CK1α, was decreased in WNT-driven tumors relative to normal gastrointestinal tissue, and knocking down CK1α increased cellular sensitivity to SSTC3. Thus, we propose that distinct CK1α abundance provides an enhanced therapeutic index for pharmacological CK1α activators to target WNT-driven tumors.
Copyright © 2017 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.
OBJECTIVES - Arachidonic acid metabolites (eicosanoids) reflect oxidative stress and vascular health and have been associated with anthropometric measures and sex differences in cross-sectional analyses of HIV-infected (HIV+) persons. Telmisartan is an angiotensin receptor blocker and PPAR-γ agonist with potential anti-inflammatory and metabolic benefits. We assessed telmisartan's effects on urine eicosanoids among HIV+ adults with central adiposity on suppressive antiretroviral therapy enrolled in a prospective clinical trial.
METHODS - Thirty-five HIV+ adults (15 women; 20 men) completed 24 weeks of open-label oral telmisartan 40mg daily. Lumbar computed tomography quantified visceral (VAT) and subcutaneous (SAT) abdominal adipose tissue. Urine F2-isoprostane (F2-IsoP), prostaglandin E2 (PGE-M), prostacyclin (PGI-M), and thromboxane B2 (TxB-M) were quantified at baseline and 24 weeks using gas/liquid chromatography-mass spectroscopy. Mann-Whitney-U tests compared sub-group differences; Spearman's rho assessed correlations between clinical factors and eicosanoid levels.
RESULTS - Median PGE-M increased on telmisartan (p<0.01), with greater changes in men (+4.1 [p = 0.03] vs. +1.0 ng/mg cr in women; between-group p = 0.25) and participants losing >5% VAT (+3.7 ng/mg cr, p<0.01) and gaining >5% SAT (+1.7 ng/mg cr, p = 0.04). Median baseline F2-IsoP and TxB-M were slightly higher in women (both between-group p = 0.08) and did not change on telmisartan.
CONCLUSIONS - Urine PGE-M increased with 24 weeks of telmisartan in virally suppressed, HIV+ adults with central adiposity. Associations with favorable fat redistribution suggest increased PGE-M may reflect a beneficial response.
Replication protein A (RPA) is an essential single-stranded DNA (ssDNA)-binding protein that initiates the DNA damage response pathway through protein-protein interactions (PPIs) mediated by its 70N domain. The identification and use of chemical probes that can specifically disrupt these interactions is important for validating RPA as a cancer target. A high-throughput screen (HTS) to identify new chemical entities was conducted, and 90 hit compounds were identified. From these initial hits, an anthranilic acid based series was optimized by using a structure-guided iterative medicinal chemistry approach to yield a cell-penetrant compound that binds to RPA70N with an affinity of 812 nm. This compound, 2-(3- (N-(3,4-dichlorophenyl)sulfamoyl)-4-methylbenzamido)benzoic acid (20 c), is capable of inhibiting PPIs mediated by this domain.
© 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.
Metabotropic glutamate receptor 7 (mGlu7) is a member of the group III mGlu receptors (mGlus), encompassed by mGlu4, mGlu6, mGlu7, and mGlu8. mGlu7 is highly expressed in the presynaptic active zones of both excitatory and inhibitory synapses, and activation of the receptor regulates the release of both glutamate and GABA. mGlu7 is thought to be a relevant therapeutic target for a number of neurological and psychiatric disorders, and polymorphisms in the GRM7 gene have been linked to autism, depression, ADHD, and schizophrenia. Here we report two new pan-group III mGlu positive allosteric modulators, VU0155094 and VU0422288, which show differential activity at the various group III mGlus. Additionally, both compounds show probe dependence when assessed in the presence of distinct orthosteric agonists. By pairing studies of these nonselective compounds with a synapse in the hippocampus that expresses only mGlu7, we have validated activity of these compounds in a native tissue setting. These studies provide proof-of-concept evidence that mGlu7 activity can be modulated by positive allosteric modulation, paving the way for future therapeutics development.
Metabotropic glutamate receptor 1α (mGluR1α), a member of the family C G protein-coupled receptors, is emerging as a potential drug target for various disorders, including chronic neuronal degenerative diseases. In addition to being activated by glutamate, mGluR1α is also modulated by extracellular Ca(2+). However, the underlying mechanism is unknown. Moreover, it has long been challenging to develop receptor-specific agonists due to homologies within the mGluR family, and the Ca(2+)-binding site(s) on mGluR1α may provide an opportunity for receptor-selective targeting by therapeutics. In the present study, we show that our previously predicted Ca(2+)-binding site in the hinge region of mGluR1α is adjacent to the site where orthosteric agonists and antagonists bind on the extracellular domain of the receptor. Moreover, we found that extracellular Ca(2+) enhanced mGluR1α-mediated intracellular Ca(2+) responses evoked by the orthosteric agonist l-quisqualate. Conversely, extracellular Ca(2+) diminished the inhibitory effect of the mGluR1α orthosteric antagonist (S)-α-methyl-4-carboxyphenylglycine. In addition, selective positive (Ro 67-4853) and negative (7-(hydroxyimino)cyclopropa[b]chromen-1a-carboxylate ethyl ester) allosteric modulators of mGluR1α potentiated and inhibited responses to extracellular Ca(2+), respectively, in a manner similar to their effects on the response of mGluR1α to glutamate. Mutations at residues predicted to be involved in Ca(2+) binding, including E325I, had significant effects on the modulation of responses to the orthosteric agonist l-quisqualate and the allosteric modulator Ro 67-4853 by extracellular Ca(2+). These studies reveal that binding of extracellular Ca(2+) to the predicted Ca(2+)-binding site in the extracellular domain of mGluR1α modulates not only glutamate-evoked signaling but also the actions of both orthosteric ligands and allosteric modulators on mGluR1α.
BACKGROUND - Pulmonary arterial hypertension is a devastating disease with high mortality. Familial cases of pulmonary arterial hypertension are usually characterized by autosomal dominant transmission with reduced penetrance, and some familial cases have unknown genetic causes.
METHODS - We studied a family in which multiple members had pulmonary arterial hypertension without identifiable mutations in any of the genes known to be associated with the disease, including BMPR2, ALK1, ENG, SMAD9, and CAV1. Three family members were studied with whole-exome sequencing. Additional patients with familial or idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension were screened for the mutations in the gene that was identified on whole-exome sequencing. All variants were expressed in COS-7 cells, and channel function was studied by means of patch-clamp analysis.
RESULTS - We identified a novel heterozygous missense variant c.608 G→A (G203D) in KCNK3 (the gene encoding potassium channel subfamily K, member 3) as a disease-causing candidate gene in the family. Five additional heterozygous missense variants in KCNK3 were independently identified in 92 unrelated patients with familial pulmonary arterial hypertension and 230 patients with idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension. We used in silico bioinformatic tools to predict that all six novel variants would be damaging. Electrophysiological studies of the channel indicated that all these missense mutations resulted in loss of function, and the reduction in the potassium-channel current was remedied by the application of the phospholipase inhibitor ONO-RS-082.
CONCLUSIONS - Our study identified the association of a novel gene, KCNK3, with familial and idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension. Mutations in this gene produced reduced potassium-channel current, which was successfully remedied by pharmacologic manipulation. (Funded by the National Institutes of Health.)
OBJECTIVE - The objective of this study was to identify genetic variants associated with angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor-associated angioedema.
PARTICIPANTS AND METHODS - We carried out a genome-wide association study in 175 individuals with ACE inhibitor-associated angioedema and 489 ACE inhibitor-exposed controls from Nashville (Tennessee) and Marshfield (Wisconsin). We tested for replication in 19 cases and 57 controls who participated in Ongoing Telmisartan Alone and in Combination with Ramipril Global Endpoint Trial (ONTARGET).
RESULTS - There were no genome-wide significant associations of any single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) with angioedema. Sixteen SNPs in African Americans and 41 SNPs in European Americans were associated moderately with angioedema (P<10) and evaluated for association in ONTARGET. The T allele of rs500766 in PRKCQ was associated with a reduced risk, whereas the G allele of rs2724635 in ETV6 was associated with an increased risk of ACE inhibitor-associated angioedema in the Nashville/Marshfield sample and ONTARGET. In a candidate gene analysis, rs989692 in the gene encoding neprilysin (MME), an enzyme that degrades bradykinin and substance P, was significantly associated with angioedema in ONTARGET and Nashville/Marshfield African Americans.
CONCLUSION - Unlike other serious adverse drug effects, ACE inhibitor-associated angioedema is not associated with a variant with a large effect size. Variants in MME and genes involved in immune regulation may be associated with ACE inhibitor-associated angioedema.
The functions of alkyl benzoates in cosmetics include fragrance ingredients, skin-conditioning agents--emollient, skin-conditioning agents--miscellaneous, preservatives, solvents, and plasticizers. The Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel reviewed the relevant animal and human data and noted gaps in the available safety data for some of the alkyl benzoates. Similar structure activity relationships, biologic functions, and cosmetic product usage allowed the available data of many of the alkyl benzoates to be extended to the entire group. Carcinogenicity data were not available, but available data indicated that these alkyl benzoate cosmetic ingredients are not genotoxic. Also benzoic acid and tested component alcohols were not reproductive or developmental toxicants, are not genotoxic in almost all assays, and are not carcinogenic. These ingredients were determined to be safe in the present practices of use and concentration.
Notwithstanding their key roles in therapy and as biological probes, 7% of approved drugs are purported to have no known primary target, and up to 18% lack a well-defined mechanism of action. Using a chemoinformatics approach, we sought to "de-orphanize" drugs that lack primary targets. Surprisingly, targets could be easily predicted for many: Whereas these targets were not known to us nor to the common databases, most could be confirmed by literature search, leaving only 13 Food and Drug Administration-approved drugs with unknown targets; the number of drugs without molecular targets likely is far fewer than reported. The number of worldwide drugs without reasonable molecular targets similarly dropped, from 352 (25%) to 44 (4%). Nevertheless, there remained at least seven drugs for which reasonable mechanism-of-action targets were unknown but could be predicted, including the antitussives clemastine, cloperastine, and nepinalone; the antiemetic benzquinamide; the muscle relaxant cyclobenzaprine; the analgesic nefopam; and the immunomodulator lobenzarit. For each, predicted targets were confirmed experimentally, with affinities within their physiological concentration ranges. Turning this question on its head, we next asked which drugs were specific enough to act as chemical probes. Over 100 drugs met the standard criteria for probes, and 40 did so by more stringent criteria. A chemical information approach to drug-target association can guide therapeutic development and reveal applications to probe biology, a focus of much current interest.