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Using an ORF kinome screen in MCF-7 cells treated with the CDK4/6 inhibitor ribociclib plus fulvestrant, we identified FGFR1 as a mechanism of drug resistance. FGFR1-amplified/ER+ breast cancer cells and MCF-7 cells transduced with FGFR1 were resistant to fulvestrant ± ribociclib or palbociclib. This resistance was abrogated by treatment with the FGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI) lucitanib. Addition of the FGFR TKI erdafitinib to palbociclib/fulvestrant induced complete responses of FGFR1-amplified/ER+ patient-derived-xenografts. Next generation sequencing of circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) in 34 patients after progression on CDK4/6 inhibitors identified FGFR1/2 amplification or activating mutations in 14/34 (41%) post-progression specimens. Finally, ctDNA from patients enrolled in MONALEESA-2, the registration trial of ribociclib, showed that patients with FGFR1 amplification exhibited a shorter progression-free survival compared to patients with wild type FGFR1. Thus, we propose breast cancers with FGFR pathway alterations should be considered for trials using combinations of ER, CDK4/6 and FGFR antagonists.
Inhibition of proliferation in estrogen receptor-positive (ER) breast cancers after short-term antiestrogen therapy correlates with long-term patient outcome. We profiled 155 ER/human epidermal growth factor receptor 2-negative (HER2) early breast cancers from 143 patients treated with the aromatase inhibitor letrozole for 10 to 21 days before surgery. Twenty-one percent of tumors remained highly proliferative, suggesting that these tumors harbor alterations associated with intrinsic endocrine therapy resistance. Whole-exome sequencing revealed a correlation between 8p11-12 and 11q13 gene amplifications, including and , respectively, and high Ki67. We corroborated these findings in a separate cohort of serial pretreatment, postneoadjuvant chemotherapy, and recurrent ER tumors. Combined inhibition of FGFR1 and CDK4/6 reversed antiestrogen resistance in ER/ coamplified CAMA1 breast cancer cells. RNA sequencing of letrozole-treated tumors revealed the existence of intrachromosomal fusion transcripts and increased expression of gene signatures indicative of enhanced E2F-mediated transcription and cell cycle processes in cancers with high Ki67. These data suggest that short-term preoperative estrogen deprivation followed by genomic profiling can be used to identify druggable alterations that may cause intrinsic endocrine therapy resistance.
Copyright © 2017 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.
amplification occurs in approximately 15% of estrogen receptor-positive (ER) human breast cancers. We investigated mechanisms by which amplification confers antiestrogen resistance to ER breast cancer. ER tumors from patients treated with letrozole before surgery were subjected to Ki67 IHC, FGFR1 FISH, and RNA sequencing (RNA-seq). ER/-amplified breast cancer cells, and patient-derived xenografts (PDX) were treated with FGFR1 siRNA or the FGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitor lucitanib. Endpoints were cell/xenograft growth, FGFR1/ERα association by coimmunoprecipitation and proximity ligation, ER genomic activity by ChIP sequencing, and gene expression by RT-PCR. ER/-amplified tumors in patients treated with letrozole maintained cell proliferation (Ki67). Estrogen deprivation increased total and nuclear FGFR1 and FGF ligands expression in ER/amplified primary tumors and breast cancer cells. In estrogen-free conditions, FGFR1 associated with ERα in tumor cell nuclei and regulated the transcription of ER-dependent genes. This association was inhibited by a kinase-dead FGFR1 mutant and by treatment with lucitanib. ChIP-seq analysis of estrogen-deprived ER/-amplified cells showed binding of FGFR1 and ERα to DNA. Treatment with fulvestrant and/or lucitanib reduced FGFR1 and ERα binding to DNA. RNA-seq data from -amplified patients' tumors treated with letrozole showed enrichment of estrogen response and E2F target genes. Finally, growth of ER/amplified cells and PDXs was more potently inhibited by fulvestrant and lucitanib combined than each drug alone.s These data suggest the ERα pathway remains active in estrogen-deprived ER/-amplified breast cancers. Therefore, these tumors are endocrine resistant and should be candidates for treatment with combinations of ER and FGFR antagonists. .
©2017 American Association for Cancer Research.
PURPOSE - Alpelisib, a selective oral inhibitor of the class I PI3K catalytic subunit p110α, has shown synergistic antitumor activity with endocrine therapy against ER/PIK3CA-mutated breast cancer cells. This phase Ib study evaluated alpelisib plus letrozole's safety, tolerability, and preliminary activity in patients with metastatic ER breast cancer refractory to endocrine therapy.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN - Twenty-six patients received letrozole and alpelisib daily. Outcomes were assessed by standard solid-tumor phase I methods. Tumor blocks were collected for DNA extraction and next-generation sequencing.
RESULTS - Alpelisib's maximum-tolerated dose (MTD) in combination with letrozole was 300 mg/d. Common drug-related adverse events included hyperglycemia, nausea, fatigue, diarrhea, and rash with dose-limiting toxicity occurring at 350 mg/d of alpelisib. The clinical benefit rate (lack of progression ≥6 months) was 35% (44% in patients with PIK3CA-mutated and 20% in PIK3CA wild-type tumors; 95% CI, 17%-56%), including five objective responses. Of eight patients remaining on treatment ≥12 months, six had tumors with a PIK3CA mutation. Among evaluable tumors, those with FGFR1/2 amplification and KRAS and TP53 mutations did not derive clinical benefit. Overexpression of FGFR1 in ER/PIK3CA mutant breast cancer cells attenuated the response to alpelisib in vitro CONCLUSIONS: The combination of letrozole and alpelisib was safe, with reversible toxicities. Clinical activity was observed independently of PIK3CA mutation status, although clinical benefit was seen in a higher proportion of patients with PIK3CA-mutated tumors. Phase II and III trials of alpelisib and endocrine therapy in patients with ER breast cancer are ongoing. Clin Cancer Res; 23(1); 26-34. ©2016 AACR.
©2016 American Association for Cancer Research.
Dissipating excess calories as heat through therapeutic stimulation of brown adipose tissues (BAT) has been proposed as a potential treatment for obesity-linked disorders. Here, we describe the generation of a humanized effector-less bispecific antibody that activates fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR) 1/βKlotho complex, a common receptor for FGF21 and FGF19. Using this molecule, we show that antibody-mediated activation of FGFR1/βKlotho complex in mice induces sustained energy expenditure in BAT, browning of white adipose tissue, weight loss, and improvements in obesity-associated metabolic derangements including insulin resistance, hyperglycemia, dyslipidemia and hepatosteatosis. In mice and cynomolgus monkeys, FGFR1/βKlotho activation increased serum high-molecular-weight adiponectin, which appears to contribute over time by enhancing the amplitude of the metabolic benefits. At the same time, insulin sensitization by FGFR1/βKlotho activation occurs even before the onset of weight loss in a manner that is independent of adiponectin. Together, selective activation of FGFR1/βKlotho complex with a long acting therapeutic antibody represents an attractive approach for the treatment of type 2 diabetes and other obesity-linked disorders through enhanced energy expenditure, insulin sensitization and induction of high-molecular-weight adiponectin.
Aberrant fibroblast growth factor receptor 3 (FGFR3) signaling disrupts chondrocyte proliferation and growth plate size and architecture, leading to various chondrodysplasias or bone overgrowth. These observations suggest that the duration, intensity and cellular context of FGFR signaling during growth plate chondrocyte maturation require tight, regulated control for proper bone elongation. However, the machinery fine-tuning FGFR signaling in chondrocytes is incompletely defined. We report here that neurofibromin, a Ras-GAP encoded by Nf1, has an overlapping expression pattern with FGFR1 and FGFR3 in prehypertrophic chondrocytes, and with FGFR1 in hypertrophic chondrocytes during endochondral ossification. Based on previous evidence that neurofibromin inhibits Ras-ERK signaling in chondrocytes and phenotypic analogies between mice with constitutive FGFR1 activation and Nf1 deficiency in Col2a1-positive chondrocytes, we asked whether neurofibromin is required to control FGFR1-Ras-ERK signaling in maturing chondrocytes in vivo. Genetic Nf1 ablation in Fgfr1-deficient chondrocytes reactivated Ras-ERK1/2 signaling in hypertrophic chondrocytes and reversed the expansion of the hypertrophic zone observed in mice lacking Fgfr1 in Col2a1-positive chondrocytes. Histomorphometric and gene expression analyses suggested that neurofibromin, by inhibiting Rankl expression, attenuates pro-osteoclastogenic FGFR1 signaling in hypertrophic chondrocytes. We also provide evidence suggesting that neurofibromin in prehypertrophic chondrocytes, downstream of FGFRs and via an indirect mechanism, is required for normal extension and organization of proliferative columns. Collectively, this study indicates that FGFR signaling provides an important input into the Ras-Raf-MEK-ERK1/2 signaling axis in chondrocytes, and that this input is differentially regulated during chondrocyte maturation by a complex intracellular machinery, of which neurofibromin is a critical component.
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BACKGROUND - Breast cancer is one of the most common malignancies in women. Genome-wide association studies have identified FGFR2 as a breast cancer susceptibility gene. Common variation in other fibroblast growth factor (FGF) receptors might also modify risk. We tested this hypothesis by studying genotyped single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and imputed SNPs in FGFR1, FGFR3, FGFR4 and FGFRL1 in the Breast Cancer Association Consortium.
METHODS - Data were combined from 49 studies, including 53 835 cases and 50 156 controls, of which 89 050 (46 450 cases and 42 600 controls) were of European ancestry, 12 893 (6269 cases and 6624 controls) of Asian and 2048 (1116 cases and 932 controls) of African ancestry. Associations with risk of breast cancer, overall and by disease sub-type, were assessed using unconditional logistic regression.
RESULTS - Little evidence of association with breast cancer risk was observed for SNPs in the FGF receptor genes. The strongest evidence in European women was for rs743682 in FGFR3; the estimated per-allele odds ratio was 1.05 (95% confidence interval=1.02-1.09, P=0.0020), which is substantially lower than that observed for SNPs in FGFR2.
CONCLUSION - Our results suggest that common variants in the other FGF receptors are not associated with risk of breast cancer to the degree observed for FGFR2.
We describe herein a patient presenting with bilateral estrogen-receptor-positive (ER+) breast tumors who was enrolled in a clinical trial exploring molecular aberrations associated with hormone-refractory tumor cell proliferation. Short-term (two week) hormonal therapy with the aromatase inhibitor letrozole substantially reduced proliferation as measured by Ki67 immunohistochemistry in one tumor, whereas the second was essentially unchanged. Extensive molecular and genetic work-up of the two tumors yielded divergent lesions in the two tumors: an activating KRAS mutation in the responsive tumor and an amplification of the fibroblast growth factor receptor-1 (FGFR1) locus in the treatment-refractory tumor. These findings provide an insight to possible mechanisms of resistance to antiestrogen therapy in ER+ breast cancers. First, they illustrate the necessity of clinically approved assays to identify FGFR1 gene amplification, which occur in approximately 5% of breast tumors and have been linked to antiestrogen resistance. It is quite possible that the addition of FGFR inhibitors to ER-targeted therapy will yield a superior antitumor effect and improved patient outcome. Second, they suggest that the role of activating mutations in RAS, although rare in breast cancer, may need to be explored in the context of ER+ breast tumors.
Lung cancer remains one of the leading causes of cancer-related death in developed countries. Although lung adenocarcinomas with EGFR mutations or EML4-ALK fusions respond to treatment by epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) inhibition, respectively, squamous cell lung cancer currently lacks therapeutically exploitable genetic alterations. We conducted a systematic search in a set of 232 lung cancer specimens for genetic alterations that were therapeutically amenable and then performed high-resolution gene copy number analyses. We identified frequent and focal fibroblast growth factor receptor 1 (FGFR1) amplification in squamous cell lung cancer (n = 155), but not in other lung cancer subtypes, and, by fluorescence in situ hybridization, confirmed the presence of FGFR1 amplifications in an independent cohort of squamous cell lung cancer samples (22% of cases). Using cell-based screening with the FGFR inhibitor PD173074 in a large (n = 83) panel of lung cancer cell lines, we demonstrated that this compound inhibited growth and induced apoptosis specifically in those lung cancer cells carrying amplified FGFR1. We validated the FGFR1 dependence of FGFR1-amplified cell lines by FGFR1 knockdown and by ectopic expression of an FGFR1-resistant allele (FGFR1(V561M)), which rescued FGFR1-amplified cells from PD173074-mediated cytotoxicity. Finally, we showed that inhibition of FGFR1 with a small molecule led to significant tumor shrinkage in vivo. Thus, focal FGFR1 amplification is common in squamous cell lung cancer and associated with tumor growth and survival, suggesting that FGFR inhibitors may be a viable therapeutic option in this cohort of patients.
Tyrosine kinase (TK) fusions are attractive drug targets in cancers. However, rapid identification of these lesions has been hampered by experimental limitations. Our in silico analysis of known cancer-derived TK fusions revealed that most breakpoints occur within a defined region upstream of a conserved GXGXXG kinase motif. We therefore designed a novel DNA-based targeted sequencing approach to screen systematically for fusions within the 90 human TKs; it should detect 92% of known TK fusions. We deliberately paired 'in-solution' DNA capture with 454 sequencing to minimize starting material requirements, take advantage of long sequence reads, and facilitate mapping of fusions. To validate this platform, we analyzed genomic DNA from thyroid cancer cells (TPC-1) and leukemia cells (KG-1) with fusions known only at the mRNA level. We readily identified for the first time the genomic fusion sequences of CCDC6-RET in TPC-1 cells and FGFR1OP2-FGFR1 in KG-1 cells. These data demonstrate the feasibility of this approach to identify TK fusions across multiple human cancers in a high-throughput, unbiased manner. This method is distinct from other similar efforts, because it focuses specifically on targets with therapeutic potential, uses only 1.5 µg of DNA, and circumvents the need for complex computational sequence analysis.