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Combination therapies to inhibit LCK tyrosine kinase and mTOR signaling in T-cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

Relapse and refractory T cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) has a poor prognosis and new combination therapies are sorely needed. This work uncovered potent drug synergies between AKT/mTORC1 inhibitors and the general tyrosine kinase-inhibitor, dasatinib. The combination effectively curbed T-ALL growth in human cell lines and primary human T-ALL samples, and was well tolerated and effective in suppressing leukemia growth in patient-derived xenografts grown in mice. Mechanistically, dasatinib inhibited phosphorylation and activation of the lymphocyte-specific protein tyrosine kinase (LCK) to blunt the T-cell receptor (TCR) signaling pathway and when complexed with mTORC1 inhibition, induced potent T-ALL cell killing through reducing MCL-1 protein expression. Analysis of responses across T-ALL subtypes and association with specific genetic mutations or expression patterns failed to identify any obvious biomarkers or correlations in predicting therapy responses, although there appeared to be a trend toward higher TCR/LCK pathway activity in samples that exhibited synergistic therapy responses.

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Dataset ID Description Technology Samples
EGAD00001008658 HiSeq X Ten Illumina NovaSeq 6000 10