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Development of SAR in an octahydropyrrolo[3,4-c]pyrrole series of negative allosteric modulators of mGlu1 using a functional cell-based assay is described in this Letter. The octahydropyrrolo[3,4-c]pyrrole scaffold was chosen as an isosteric replacement for the piperazine ring found in the initial hit compound. Characterization of selected compounds in protein binding assays was used to identify the most promising analogs, which were then profiled in P450 inhibition assays in order to further assess the potential for drug-likeness within this series of compounds.
Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
While transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β1)-induced SMAD2/3 signaling is a critical event in the progression of chronic kidney disease, the role of non-SMAD mechanisms in the orchestration of fibrotic gene changes remains largely unexplored. TGF-β1/SMAD3 pathway activation in renal fibrosis (induced by ureteral ligation) correlated with epidermal growth factor receptor(Y845) (EGFR(Y845)) and p53(Ser15) phosphorylation and induction of disease causative target genes plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) and connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) prompting an investigation of the mechanistic involvement of EGFR and tumor suppressor p53 in profibrotic signaling. TGF-β1, PAI-1, CTGF, p53 and EGFR were co-expressed in the obstructed kidney localizing predominantly to the tubular and interstitial compartments. Indeed, TGF-β1 activated EGFR and p53 as well as SMAD2/3. Genetic deficiency of either EGFR or p53 or functional blockade with AG1478 or Pifithrin-α, respectively, effectively inhibited PAI-1and CTGF induction and morphological transformation of renal fibroblasts as did SMAD3 knockdown or pretreatment with the SMAD3 inhibitor SIS3. Reactive oxygen species (ROS)-dependent mechanisms initiated by TGF-β1 were critical for EGFR(Y845) and p53(Ser15) phosphorylation and target gene expression. The p22(Phox) subunit of NADPH oxidase was also elevated in the fibrotic kidney with an expression pattern similar to p53 and EGFR. EGF stimulation alone initiated, albeit delayed, c-terminal SMAD3 phosphorylation (that required the TGF-β1 receptor) and rapid ERK2 activation both of which are necessary for PAI-1 and CTGF induction in renal fibroblasts. These data highlight the extensive cross-talk among SMAD2/3, EGFR and p53 pathways essential for expression of TGF-β1-induced fibrotic target genes.
INTRODUCTION - Estrogen receptor α-positive (ER+) breast cancers adapt to hormone deprivation and acquire resistance to antiestrogen therapies. Upon acquisition of hormone independence, ER+ breast cancer cells increase their dependence on the phosphatidylinositol-3 kinase (PI3K)/AKT pathway. We examined the effects of AKT inhibition and its compensatory upregulation of insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-I/InsR signaling in ER+ breast cancer cells with acquired resistance to estrogen deprivation.
METHODS - Inhibition of AKT using the catalytic inhibitor AZD5363 was examined in four ER+ breast cancer cell lines resistant to long-term estrogen deprivation (LTED) by western blotting and proliferation assays. Feedback upregulation and activation of receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs) was examined by western blotting, real-time qPCR, ELISAs, membrane localization of AKT PH-GFP by immunofluorescence and phospho-RTK arrays. For studies in vivo, athymic mice with MCF-7 xenografts were treated with AZD5363 and fulvestrant with either the ATP-competitive IGF-IR/InsR inhibitor AZD9362 or the fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR) inhibitor AZD4547.
RESULTS - Treatment with AZD5363 reduced phosphorylation of the AKT/mTOR substrates PRAS40, GSK3α/β and S6K while inducing hyperphosphorylation of AKT at T308 and S473. Inhibition of AKT with AZD5363 suppressed growth of three of four ER+ LTED lines and prevented emergence of hormone-independent MCF-7, ZR75-1 and MDA-361 cells. AZD5363 suppressed growth of MCF-7 xenografts in ovariectomized mice and a patient-derived luminal B xenograft unresponsive to tamoxifen or fulvestrant. Combined treatment with AZD5363 and fulvestrant suppressed MCF-7 xenograft growth better than either drug alone. Inhibition of AKT with AZD5363 resulted in upregulation and activation of RTKs, including IGF-IR and InsR, upregulation of FoxO3a and ERα mRNAs as well as FoxO- and ER-dependent transcription of IGF-I and IGF-II ligands. Inhibition of IGF-IR/InsR or PI3K abrogated AKT PH-GFP membrane localization and T308 P-AKT following treatment with AZD5363. Treatment with IGFBP-3 blocked AZD5363-induced P-IGF-IR/InsR and T308 P-AKT, suggesting that receptor phosphorylation was dependent on increased autocrine ligands. Finally, treatment with the dual IGF-IR/InsR inhibitor AZD9362 enhanced the anti-tumor effect of AZD5363 in MCF-7/LTED cells and MCF-7 xenografts in ovariectomized mice devoid of estrogen supplementation.
CONCLUSIONS - These data suggest combinations of AKT and IGF-IR/InsR inhibitors would be an effective treatment strategy against hormone-independent ER+ breast cancer.
BACKGROUND - Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a vasculopathy characterized by enhanced pulmonary artery smooth muscle cell (PASMC) proliferation and suppressed apoptosis. This results in both increase in pulmonary arterial pressure and pulmonary vascular resistance. Recent studies have shown the implication of the signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3)/bone morphogenetic protein receptor 2 (BMPR2)/peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPARγ) in PAH. STAT3 activation induces BMPR2 downregulation, decreasing PPARγ, which both contribute to the proproliferative and antiapoptotic phenotype seen in PAH. In chondrocytes, activation of this axis has been attributed to the advanced glycation end-products receptor (RAGE). As RAGE is one of the most upregulated proteins in PAH patients' lungs and a strong STAT3 activator, we hypothesized that by activating STAT3, RAGE induces BMPR2 and PPARγ downregulation, promoting PAH-PASMC proliferation and resistance to apoptosis.
METHODS AND RESULTS - In vitro, using PASMCs isolated from PAH and healthy patients, we demonstrated that RAGE is overexpressed in PAH-PASMC (6-fold increase), thus inducing STAT3 activation (from 10% to 40% positive cells) and decrease in BMPR2 and PPARγ levels (>50% decrease). Pharmacological activation of RAGE in control cells by S100A4 recapitulates the PAH phenotype (increasing RAGE by 6-fold, thus activating STAT3 and decreasing BMPR2 and PPARγ). In both conditions, this phenotype is totally reversed on RAGE inhibition. In vivo, RAGE inhibition in monocrotaline- and Sugen-induced PAH demonstrates therapeutic effects characterized by PA pressure and right ventricular hypertrophy decrease (control rats have an mPAP around 15 mm Hg, PAH rats have an mPAP >40 mm Hg, and with RAGE inhibition, mPAP decreases to 20 and 28 mm Hg, respectively, in MCT and Sugen models). This was associated with significant improvement in lung perfusion and vascular remodeling due to decrease in proliferation (>50% decrease) and BMPR2/PPARγ axis restoration (increased by ≥60%).
CONCLUSION - We have demonstrated the implications of RAGE in PAH etiology. Thus, RAGE constitutes a new attractive therapeutic target for PAH.
PURPOSE - To evaluate γ-H2AX foci as a pharmacodynamic marker for DNA damage induced by DNA interstrand cross-linking drugs.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN - γ-H2AX foci formation was validated preclinically in comparison with the Comet assay, and evaluated pharmacodynamically in two phase I studies of different dosing schedules of the novel cross-linking agent SJG-136 (SG2000).
RESULTS - The measurement of γ-H2AX foci in human fibroblasts and lymphocytes in vitro was more than 10-fold more sensitive than Comet assay measurement of cross-linking, with peak γ-H2AX response 24 hours after the peak of cross-linking. In lymphocytes from a phase I study (every three week schedule), γ-H2AX foci were detectable 1 hour following the end of administration, and in all patients, maximum response was observed at 24 hours. Significant levels of foci were still evident at days 8 and 15 consistent with the known persistence of the DNA damage produced by this agent. In two tumor biopsy samples, foci were detected 4 hours postinfusion with levels higher than in lymphocytes. Extensive foci formation was also observed before the third dose in cycle 1 in lymphocytes from a second phase I study (daily × 3 schedule). These foci also persisted with a significant level evident before the second cycle (day 21). An increased γ-H2AX response was observed during the second cycle consistent with a cumulative pharmacodynamic effect. No clear relationship between foci formation and administered drug dose was observed.
CONCLUSION - This is the first use of γ-H2AX as a pharmacodynamic response to a DNA cross-linking agent in a clinical trial setting.
The first total synthesis of Aplidiopsamine A, a rare 3H-pyrrolo[2,3-c]quinoline alkaloid from the Aplidiopsis confluata, has been achieved following the proposed biosynthesis. This biomimetic synthesis requires only five steps and proceeds in 20.8% overall yield. Biological evaluation across large panels of discrete molecular targets identified that Aplidiopsamine A is a highly selective PDE4 inhibitor, a target for numerous CNS disorders.
Damage to heart cells leading to heart failure is a known complication of well-established cancer therapies including anthracycline antibiotics and radiation therapy, and the cardiovascular complications of these therapies has been controlled in large part through dose limitations and modifications of delivery methods. Recent research into the cellular and molecular mechanisms for the cardiovascular effects of these therapies may lead to other cardioprotective strategies that improve effectiveness of cancer treatments. Newer cancer therapies that have been developed based upon specifically targeting oncogene signaling also have been associated with heart failure. Rapid development of a detailed understanding of how these agents cause cardiac dysfunction promises to improve outcomes in cancer patients, as well as stimulate concepts of cardiovascular homeostasis that will likely accelerate development of cardiovascular therapies.
BACKGROUND - A retrospective, registry-based analysis to assess the outcomes of metastatic renal cell cancer (mRCC) patients treated with sunitinib and sorafenib who developed dermatologic adverse events was performed.
PATIENTS AND METHODS - Data on mRCC patients treated with sunitinib or sorafenib were obtained from the Czech Clinical Registry of Renal Cell Cancer Patients. Outcomes of patients who developed hand-foot syndrome (HFS) of any grade and/or grade 3/4 rash during the treatment were compared with patients without HFS and no, mild, or moderate rash.
RESULTS - The cohort included 705 patients treated with sunitinib and 365 patients treated with sorafenib. For sunitinib, the median overall survival (OS) was 43.0 months versus 31.0 months (P = 0.027) and median progression-free survival (PFS) 20.8 months versus 11.1 months (P = 0.007) for patients with versus without dermatologic toxicity, respectively. For sorafenib, the median OS and PFS were 27.9 and 24.6 months (P = 0.244), and 12.2 and 8.8 months (P = 0.050), respectively. In multivariable Cox regression, the skin toxicity was significantly associated with longer OS in the sunitinib cohort.
CONCLUSION - The presence of skin toxicity is associated with improved OS and PFS in patients with mRCC treated with sunitinib.