In the treatment of breakpoint cluster region-Abelson (BCR-ABL)-positive chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) using BCR-ABL inhibitors, the appearance of a gatekeeper mutation (T315I) in BCR-ABL is a serious issue. Therefore, the development of novel drugs that overcome acquired resistance to BCR-ABL inhibitors by CML cells is required. We previously demonstrated that a bis-pyridinium fullerene derivative (BPF) induced apoptosis in human chronic myeloid leukemia (CML)-derived K562 cells partially through the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). We herein show that BPF enhanced the activation of the mitogen-activated protein kinase/extracellular signal-regulated kinase kinase-extracellular signal-regulated kinase (MEK-ERK) pathway in a ROS-independent manner. BPF-induced apoptosis was attenuated by trametinib, suggesting the functional involvement of the MEK-ERK pathway in apoptosis in K562 cells. In addition, the constitutive activation of the MEK-ERK pathway by the enforced expression of the BRAFV600E mutant significantly increased the sensitivity of K562 cells to BPF. These results confirmed for the first time that BPF induces apoptosis in K562 cells through dual pathways—ROS production and the activation of the MEK-ERK pathway. Furthermore, BPF induced cell death in transformed Ba/F3 cells expressing not only BCR-ABL but also T315I mutant through the activation of the MEK-ERK pathway. These results indicate that BPF is as an effective CML drug that overcomes resistance to BCR-ABL inhibitors.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- コンピュータ サイエンスの応用