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Blood. 2011 Feb 10;117(6):1947-57. doi: 10.1182/blood-2010-06-291146. Epub 2010 Dec 10.

Disruption of Src function potentiates Chk1-inhibitor-induced apoptosis in human multiple myeloma cells in vitro and in vivo.

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  • 1Division of Hematology/Oncology, Department of Medicine, Virginia Commonwealth University, and the Massey Cancer Center, Richmond, VA 23298, USA.


Ras/MEK/ERK pathway activation represents an important compensatory response of human multiple myeloma (MM) cells to checkpoint kinase 1 (Chk1) inhibitors. To investigate the functional roles of Src in this event and potential therapeutic significance, interactions between Src and Chk1 inhibitors (eg, UCN-01 or Chk1i) were examined in vitro and in vivo. The dual Src/Abl inhibitors BMS354825 and SKI-606 blocked Chk1-inhibitor-induced extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) activation, markedly increasing apoptosis in association with BimEL up-regulation, p34(cdc2) activation, and DNA damage in MM cell lines and primary CD138(+) MM samples. Loss-of-function Src mutants (K297R, K296R/Y528F) or shRNA knock-down of Src prevented the ERK1/2 activation induced by Chk1 inhibitors and increased apoptosis. Conversely, constitutively active Ras or mitogen-activated protein kinase/ERK kinase 1 (MEK1) significantly diminished the ability of Src inhibitors to potentiate Chk1-inhibitor lethality. Moreover, Src/Chk1-inhibitor cotreatment attenuated MM-cell production of vascular endothelial growth factor and other angiogenic factors (eg, ANG [angiogenin], TIMP1/2 [tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases 1/2], and RANTES [regulated on activation normal T-cell expressed and secreted]), and inhibited in vitro angiogenesis. Finally, coadministration of BMS354825 and UCN-01 suppressed human MM tumor growth in a murine xenograft model, increased apoptosis, and diminished angiogenesis. These findings suggest that Src kinase is required for Chk1-inhibitor-mediated Ras → ERK1/2 signaling activation, and that disruption of this event sharply potentiates the anti-MM activity of Chk1 inhi-bitors in vitro and in vivo.

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