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Ref Type Abstract
Authors Douglas D. Fang, Hengrui Zhu, Qiuqiong Tang, Qixin Wang, Na Li, Xu Fang, Ping Min, Guangfeng Wang, Dajun Yang and Yifan Zhai
Title FMS-like tyrosine kinase 3 (FLT3) inhibition by olverembatinib (HQP1351) downregulates MCL-1 and synergizes with BCL-2 inhibitor APG-2575 in preclinical models of FLT3-mutant acute myeloid leukemia (AML)
Journal Cancer Research
Vol 81
Issue 13_Suppl
Date 2021
Abstract Text AML accounts for 80% of acute leukemias in adults. FLT3 gene mutations are observed in approximately 30% of patients with AML and augur a poor prognosis. Despite antitumor effects of selective FLT3 inhibitors, resistance to these agents continues to pose a formidable clinical challenge. The expression of pro-survival protein BCL-2 is frequently dysregulated, conferring resistance to FLT3 inhibitors, in AML. In this study, we explored the combination of clinical stage multikinase inhibitor HQP1351 (which also targets FLT3) and BCL-2-selective inhibitor APG-2575 in preclinical models of FLT3-mutant AML. Antileukemic activity of HQP1351 was first examined using AML cell lines MV-4-11 and MOLM-13, which harbor FLT3-internal tandem duplication (FLT3/ITD) mutations. In both cell lines, HQP1351 dose-dependently induced cellular apoptosis, APG-2575 also induced apoptosis, and their combination synergistically induced this process. In particular, treatment of subcutaneous MV-4-11 xenograft tumors in nude mice with HQP1351 10 mg/kg significantly suppressed tumor growth, with a tumor growth inhibition (TGI) of 72.4%. This antitumor effect was potentiated when APG-2575 was combined with HQP1351, resulting in a TGI of 97.2%. The combination also improved survival of tumor-bearing mice with a systemic MOLM-13 model compared to either agent alone. Mechanistically, HQP1351 likely inhibited phosphorylation of FLT3 and its downstream signaling pathways, including phosphorylation of AKT, ERK1/2 and STAT5. Taken together, these findings indicate that the antileukemic activity of olverembatinib can be ascribed to on-target inhibition. Single-agent APG-2575 agent triggered cellular apoptosis, as evidenced by cleavage of caspase-3 cleavage and poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase-1 (PARP-1) activation, which are considered hallmarks of apoptosis. Consequently, APG-2575 treatment also increased expression of another antiapoptotic protein (MCL-1), upregulation of which is a pivotal mechanisms of resistance to BCL-2 inhibitors. Notably, HQP1351 substantially decreased cellular MCL-1 expression when combined with APG-2575, further enhancing apoptosis.Taken together, our data suggest that FLT3 inhibition by HQP1351 downregulates MCL-1 and synergizes with BCL-2 inhibitor APG-2575 to potentiate cellular apoptosis in FLT3-mutant AML. The results provide scientific rationale for clinical development of HQP1351 combined with APG-2575 in patients with FLT3-ITD-mutant AML.


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Molecular Profile Treatment Approach
Gene Name Source Synonyms Protein Domains Gene Description Gene Role
Therapy Name Drugs Efficacy Evidence Clinical Trials
Drug Name Trade Name Synonyms Drug Classes Drug Description
Gene Variant Impact Protein Effect Variant Description Associated with drug Resistance
Molecular Profile Indication/Tumor Type Response Type Therapy Name Approval Status Evidence Type Efficacy Evidence References
FLT3 exon 14 ins acute myeloid leukemia predicted - sensitive APG-2575 + HQP1351 Preclinical - Cell line xenograft Actionable In a preclinical study, combination treatment with GZD824 (HQP1351) and APG-2575 synergistically induced apoptosis in acute myeloid leukemia cell lines harboring FLT3-ITD in culture, and led to greater tumor growth inhibition and improved survival than single agent alone in cell line xenograft models (Cancer Res 2021;81(13_Suppl):Abstract nr 1096). detail...