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Clin Cancer Res. 2011 Apr 15;17(8):2373-84. doi: 10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-10-2289. Epub 2011 Mar 3.

Dual targeting of phosphoinositide 3-kinase and mammalian target of rapamycin using NVP-BEZ235 as a novel therapeutic approach in human ovarian carcinoma.

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Division of Gynecologic Oncology, Departments of Obstetrics and Gynecology, UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1740, USA.



This study evaluates the effect of dual PI3K and mTOR inhibition using NVP-BEZ235 in preclinical models of ovarian cancer as a potential novel therapeutic strategy.


Inhibition of PI3K/Akt/mTOR signaling by NVP-BEZ235 was demonstrated by immunoblotting. The effect on cell proliferation was assessed in 18 ovarian cancer cell lines, including four pairs of syngeneic cisplatin-sensitive and cisplatin-resistant cell lines. The in vivo effects of NVP-BEZ235 on established tumor growth were evaluated using an immunocompetent, transgenic murine ovarian cancer model (LSL-K-ras(G12D/+)Pten(loxP/loxP)).


NVP-BEZ235 decreased cell proliferation in all ovarian cancer cell lines assayed and sensitized cisplatin-resistant cells to the cytotoxic effects of cisplatin. Cell lines with PI3K-activating mutations or Pten deletions were significantly more sensitive to the effect of NVP-BEZ235 than cell lines without these mutations (P < 0.05). A statistically significant correlation was found between relative levels of p4E-BP1 and the IC(50) for NVP-BEZ235. In LSL-K-ras(G12D/+)Pten(loxP/loxP) mice with established intraperitoneal tumor disease, oral administration of NVP-BEZ235 decreased pAkt, p4E-BP1 and Ki67 in tumor tissue, and resulted in significantly longer survival compared to control animals (P < 0.05). NVP-BEZ235 also induced cell cycle arrest, caspase 3 activity, and reduced cell migration.


Targeting PI3K and mTOR simultaneously using NVP-BEZ235 effectively inhibits ovarian cancer cell growth even in the presence of platinum resistance and prolongs survival of mice with intra-abdominal ovarian tumor disease. We propose that dual PI3K and mTOR inhibition using NVP-BEZ235 may be an effective novel therapeutic approach in patients with ovarian cancer.

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