MEK inhibitors enhance therapeutic response towards ATRA in NF1 associated malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors (MPNST) in-vitro Fischer-Huchzermeyer, Susan
Mautner, Victor Felix
MEK inhibitors enhance therapeutic response towards ATRA in NF1 associated malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors (MPNST) in-vitro
Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) is a hereditary tumor syndrome characterized by an increased risk of malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors (MPNST). Chemotherapy of MPNST is still insufficient. In this study, we investigated whether human tumor Schwann cells derived from NF1 associated MPNST respond to all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA). We analyzed effects of ATRA and MEK inhibitor (MEKi) combination therapy.
MPNST cell lines S462, T265, NSF1 were treated with ATRA and MEKi U0126 and PD0325901. We assessed cell viability, proliferation, migration, apoptosis and differentiation as well as mRNA expression of RAR and RXR subtypes and ATRA target genes such as CRABP2, CYP26A1, RARB and PDK1. We also analyzed CRABP2 methylation in cell lines and performed immunohistochemistry of human MPNST specimens.
ATRA therapy reduced viability and proliferation in S462 and T265 cells, accompanied by differentiation, apoptosis and reduced migration. NSF1 cells which lacked RXRG expression did not respond to ATRA. We furthermore demonstrated that ATRA signaling was functional for common targets, and that mRNA expression of CRABP2 and its targets was raised by ATRA therapy, whereas alternative pathways via FABP5 were not induced. Finally, combination of ATRA and MEKi demonstrated additively reduced viability of T265 and S462 cells.
We observed therapeutic effects in two of three MPNST cell lines pronounced by combination therapy. These data point to a potentially successful treatment of MPNST by combined application of ATRA and MEK inhibitors such as U0126 or PD0325901.
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