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Mol Cancer Res. 2019 Aug;17(8):1710-1720. doi: 10.1158/1541-7786.MCR-18-1233. Epub 2019 May 20.

Targeting IDH1 as a Prosenescent Therapy in High-grade Serous Ovarian Cancer.

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Department of Cellular & Molecular Physiology, Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, Pennsylvania.
Department of Pathology, Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, Pennsylvania.
Department of Pharmacology, Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, Pennsylvania.
Division of Reproductive Sciences, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, Denver, Colorado.
AJ Drexel Autism Institute, Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Department of Cellular & Molecular Physiology, Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, Pennsylvania.


Epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is the deadliest gynecologic cancer. High-grade serous carcinoma (HGSC) is the most frequently diagnosed and lethal histosubtype of EOC. A significant proportion of patients with HGSC relapse with chemoresistant disease. Therefore, there is an urgent need for novel therapeutic strategies for HGSC. Metabolic reprogramming is a hallmark of cancer cells, and targeting metabolism for cancer therapy may be beneficial. Here, we found that in comparison with normal fallopian tube epithelial cells, HGSC cells preferentially utilize glucose in the TCA cycle and not for aerobic glycolysis. This correlated with universally increased TCA cycle enzyme expression in HGSC cells under adherent conditions. HGSC disseminates as tumor cell spheroids within the peritoneal cavity. We found that wild-type isocitrate dehydrogenase I (IDH1) is the only TCA cycle enzyme upregulated in both adherent and spheroid conditions and is associated with reduced progression-free survival. IDH1 protein expression is also increased in patients with primary HGSC tumors. Pharmacologic inhibition or knockdown of IDH1 decreased proliferation of multiple HGSC cell lines by inducing senescence. Mechanistically, suppression of IDH1 increased the repressive histone mark H3K9me2 at multiple E2F target gene loci, which led to decreased expression of these genes. Altogether, these data suggest that increased IDH1 activity is an important metabolic adaptation in HGSC and that targeting wild-type IDH1 in HGSC alters the repressive histone epigenetic landscape to induce senescence. IMPLICATIONS: Inhibition of IDH1 may act as a novel therapeutic approach to alter both the metabolism and epigenetics of HGSC as a prosenescent therapy.

[Available on 2020-08-01]

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