Molecular determinants of melanoma malignancy: selecting targets for improved efficacy of chemotherapy.

Yang J, Zaja-Milatovic S, Thu YM, Lee F, Smykla R, Richmond A
Mol Cancer Ther. 2009 8 (3): 636-47

PMID: 19276165 · PMCID: PMC3140401 · DOI:10.1158/1535-7163.MCT-08-0749

The BRAFV600E mutation is common in human melanoma. This mutation enhances IkappaB kinase (IKK)/nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-kappaB) and extracellular signal-regulated kinase/activator protein signaling cascades. In this study, we evaluated the efficacy of targeting either B-Raf or IKKbeta in combination with the DNA alkylating agent temozolomide for treatment of advanced metastatic melanoma. Xenografts of Hs294T human metastatic melanoma cells exhibiting the BRAFV600E mutation were treated with inhibitors of IKKbeta (BMS-345541), B-Raf (BAY 54-9085), and/or temozolomide. Drug response was mechanistically analyzed in vitro and in vivo. In this study, we determined that the antitumor activity of all three drugs depends on inhibition of NF-kappaB. BMS-345541 inhibits IKKbeta-mediated phosphorylation of IkappaBalpha and thus blocks the nuclear localization of NF-kappaB, whereas BAY 54-9085 inhibits activation of NF-kappaB through a mechanism that does not involve stabilization of IkappaBalpha. Moreover, BMS-345541, but not BAY 54-9085, activates the death pathways of p53 and c-Jun-NH2-kinase, contributing to the killing of melanoma cells. Temozolomide inhibits both NF-kappaB and extracellular signal-regulated kinase activity, conferring effective in vivo antitumor activity. Thus, temozolomide, but not BAY 54-9085, has a synergistic in vivo antitumor effect with BMS-345541. We conclude that the efficacy of antimelanoma therapy depends on inhibition of expression of antiapoptotic genes transcriptionally regulated by NF-kappaB. In contrast, drug targeting of the extracellular signal-regulated kinase/mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway alone in melanoma cells is ineffective for melanoma therapy in cases where NF-kappaB is not also targeted.

MeSH Terms (27)

Animals Antineoplastic Agents Benzenesulfonates Biomarkers, Tumor Dacarbazine Drug Delivery Systems Drug Synergism Female Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic Humans Imidazoles Melanoma Mice Mice, Inbred BALB C Mice, Nude Models, Biological Niacinamide Phenylurea Compounds Pyridines Quinoxalines Skin Neoplasms Sorafenib Substrate Specificity Temozolomide Treatment Outcome Tumor Cells, Cultured Xenograft Model Antitumor Assays

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