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Mol Cancer Ther. 2018 Dec;17(12):2495-2506. doi: 10.1158/1535-7163.MCT-18-0082. Epub 2018 Sep 25.

Cyclooxygenase-2 Influences Response to Cotargeting of MEK and CDK4/6 in a Subpopulation of Pancreatic Cancers.

Author information

1
Department of Pharmacology, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, Michigan.
2
Department of Radiology, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, Michigan.
3
Department of Biostatistics, University of Michigan School of Public Health, Ann Arbor, Michigan.
4
Department of Computational Medicine and Bioinformatics, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, Michigan.
5
Department of Surgery, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, Michigan.
6
Department of Pharmacology, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, Michigan. jssl@med.umich.edu.

Abstract

The ineffectiveness of chemotherapy in patients with pancreatic cancer highlights a critical unmet need in pancreatic cancer therapy. Two commonly mutated genes in pancreatic cancer, KRAS and CDKN2A, have an incidence exceeding 90%, supporting investigation of dual targeting of MEK and CDK4/6 as a potential therapeutic strategy for this patient population. An in vitro proliferation synergy screen was conducted to evaluate response of a panel of high passage and patient-derived pancreatic cancer models to the combination of trametinib and palbociclib to inhibit MEK and CDK4/6, respectively. Two adenosquamous carcinoma models, L3.6pl and UM59, stood out for their high synergy response. In vivo studies confirmed that this combination treatment approach was highly effective in subcutaneously implanted L3.6pl and UM59 tumor-bearing animals. Both models were refractory to single-agent treatment. Reverse-phase protein array analysis of L3.6pl tumors excised from treated animals revealed strong downregulation of COX-2 expression in response to combination treatment. Expression of COX-2 under a CMV-driven promoter and shRNA knockdown of COX-2 both led to resistance to combination treatment. Our findings suggest that COX-2 may be involved in the improved therapeutic outcome seen in some pancreatic tumors that fail to respond to MEK or CDK4/6 inhibitors alone but respond favorably to their combination.

PMID:
30254182
PMCID:
PMC6279520
[Available on 2019-12-01]
DOI:
10.1158/1535-7163.MCT-18-0082
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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