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Mol Cancer Ther. 2008 Sep;7(9):2955-66. doi: 10.1158/1535-7163.MCT-08-0492.

AZD7762, a novel checkpoint kinase inhibitor, drives checkpoint abrogation and potentiates DNA-targeted therapies.

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AstraZeneca R&D Boston, 35 Gatehouse Drive, Waltham, MA 02451, USA.


Insights from cell cycle research have led to the hypothesis that tumors may be selectively sensitized to DNA-damaging agents resulting in improved antitumor activity and a wider therapeutic margin. The theory relies on the observation that the majority of tumors are deficient in the G1-DNA damage checkpoint pathway resulting in reliance on S and G2 checkpoints for DNA repair and cell survival. The S and G2 checkpoints are regulated by checkpoint kinase 1, a serine/threonine kinase that is activated in response to DNA damage; thus, inhibition of checkpoint kinase 1 signaling impairs DNA repair and increases tumor cell death. Normal tissues, however, have a functioning G1 checkpoint signaling pathway allowing for DNA repair and cell survival. Here, we describe the preclinical profile of AZD7762, a potent ATP-competitive checkpoint kinase inhibitor in clinical trials. AZD7762 has been profiled extensively in vitro and in vivo in combination with DNA-damaging agents and has been shown to potentiate response in several different settings where inhibition of checkpoint kinase results in the abrogation of DNA damage-induced cell cycle arrest. Dose-dependent potentiation of antitumor activity, when AZD7762 is administered in combination with DNA-damaging agents, has been observed in multiple xenograft models with several DNA-damaging agents, further supporting the potential of checkpoint kinase inhibitors to enhance the efficacy of both conventional chemotherapy and radiotherapy and increase patient response rates in a variety of settings.

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