Publications by authors named "Amanda Luu"

10 Publications

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Protein kinase C and SRC signaling define reciprocally related subgroups of glioblastoma with distinct therapeutic vulnerabilities.

Cell Rep 2021 Nov;37(8):110054

Department of Cancer Biology, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL 32224, USA. Electronic address:

We report that atypical protein kinase Cι (PKCι) is an oncogenic driver of glioblastoma (GBM). Deletion or inhibition of PKCι significantly impairs tumor growth and prolongs survival in murine GBM models. GBM cells expressing elevated PKCι signaling are sensitive to PKCι inhibitors, whereas those expressing low PKCι signaling exhibit active SRC signaling and sensitivity to SRC inhibitors. Resistance to the PKCι inhibitor auranofin is associated with activated SRC signaling and response to a SRC inhibitor, whereas resistance to a SRC inhibitor is associated with activated PKCι signaling and sensitivity to auranofin. Interestingly, PKCι- and SRC-dependent cells often co-exist in individual GBM tumors, and treatment of GBM-bearing mice with combined auranofin and SRC inhibitor prolongs survival beyond either drug alone. Thus, we identify PKCι and SRC signaling as distinct therapeutic vulnerabilities that are directly translatable into an improved treatment for GBM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.celrep.2021.110054DOI Listing
November 2021

Identifying therapeutic drug targets using bidirectional effect genes.

Nat Commun 2021 04 13;12(1):2224. Epub 2021 Apr 13.

BioMarin Pharmaceutical Inc., Novato, CA, USA.

Prioritizing genes for translation to therapeutics for common diseases has been challenging. Here, we propose an approach to identify drug targets with high probability of success by focusing on genes with both gain of function (GoF) and loss of function (LoF) mutations associated with opposing effects on phenotype (Bidirectional Effect Selected Targets, BEST). We find 98 BEST genes for a variety of indications. Drugs targeting those genes are 3.8-fold more likely to be approved than non-BEST genes. We focus on five genes (IGF1R, NPPC, NPR2, FGFR3, and SHOX) with evidence for bidirectional effects on stature. Rare protein-altering variants in those genes result in significantly increased risk for idiopathic short stature (ISS) (OR = 2.75, p = 3.99 × 10). Finally, using functional experiments, we demonstrate that adding an exogenous CNP analog (encoded by NPPC) rescues the phenotype, thus validating its potential as a therapeutic treatment for ISS. Our results show the value of looking for bidirectional effects to identify and validate drug targets.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-21843-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8044152PMC
April 2021

Myosin 10 Regulates Invasion, Mitosis, and Metabolic Signaling in Glioblastoma.

iScience 2020 Dec 13;23(12):101802. Epub 2020 Nov 13.

Department of Cancer Biology, Mayo Clinic, 4500 San Pablo Road, Jacksonville, FL 32224, USA.

Invasion and proliferation are defining phenotypes of cancer, and in glioblastoma blocking one stimulates the other, implying that effective therapy must inhibit both, ideally through a single target that is also dispensable for normal tissue function. The molecular motor myosin 10 meets these criteria. Myosin 10 knockout mice can survive to adulthood, implying that normal cells can compensate for its loss; its deletion impairs invasion, slows proliferation, and prolongs survival in murine models of glioblastoma. Myosin 10 deletion also enhances tumor dependency on the DNA damage and the metabolic stress responses and induces synthetic lethality when combined with inhibitors of these processes. Our results thus demonstrate that targeting myosin 10 is active against glioblastoma by itself, synergizes with other clinically available therapeutics, may have acceptable side effects in normal tissues, and has potential as a heretofore unexplored therapeutic approach for this disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.isci.2020.101802DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7702012PMC
December 2020

Intermittent enzyme replacement therapy with recombinant human β-galactosidase prevents neuraminidase 1 deficiency

J Biol Chem 2020 09 28;295(39):13556-13569. Epub 2020 Jul 28.

Research Department, BioMarin Pharmaceutical, Inc., Novato, California, USA. Electronic address:

Mutations in the β () gene cause lysosomal β-galactosidase (β-Gal) deficiency and clinical onset of the neurodegenerative lysosomal storage disease, GM1 gangliosidosis. β-Gal and neuraminidase 1 (NEU1) form a multienzyme complex in lysosomes along with the molecular chaperone, protective protein cathepsin A (PPCA). NEU1 is deficient in the neurodegenerative lysosomal storage disease sialidosis, and its targeting to and stability in lysosomes strictly depend on PPCA. In contrast, β-Gal only partially depends on PPCA, prompting us to investigate the role that β-Gal plays in the multienzyme complex. Here, we demonstrate that β-Gal negatively regulates NEU1 levels in lysosomes by competitively displacing this labile sialidase from PPCA. Chronic cellular uptake of purified recombinant human β-Gal (rhβ-Gal) or chronic lentiviral-mediated GLB1 overexpression in GM1 gangliosidosis patient fibroblasts coincides with profound secondary NEU1 deficiency. A regimen of intermittent enzyme replacement therapy dosing with rhβ-Gal, followed by enzyme withdrawal, is sufficient to augment β-Gal activity levels in GM1 gangliosidosis patient fibroblasts without promoting NEU1 deficiency. In the absence of β-Gal, NEU1 levels are elevated in the GM1 gangliosidosis mouse brain, which are restored to normal levels following weekly intracerebroventricular dosing with rhβ-Gal. Collectively, our results highlight the need to carefully titrate the dose and dosing frequency of β-Gal augmentation therapy for GM1 gangliosidosis. They further suggest that intermittent intracerebroventricular enzyme replacement therapy dosing with rhβ-Gal is a tunable approach that can safely augment β-Gal levels while maintaining NEU1 at physiological levels in the GM1 gangliosidosis brain.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1074/jbc.RA119.010794DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7521647PMC
September 2020

Enhancing Brain Retention of a KIF11 Inhibitor Significantly Improves its Efficacy in a Mouse Model of Glioblastoma.

Sci Rep 2020 04 16;10(1):6524. Epub 2020 Apr 16.

Brain Barriers Research Center, Department of Pharmaceutics, College of Pharmacy, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, USA.

Glioblastoma, the most lethal primary brain cancer, is extremely proliferative and invasive. Tumor cells at tumor/brain-interface often exist behind a functionally intact blood-brain barrier (BBB), and so are shielded from exposure to therapeutic drug concentrations. An ideal glioblastoma treatment needs to engage targets that drive proliferation as well as invasion, with brain penetrant therapies. One such target is the mitotic kinesin KIF11, which can be inhibited with ispinesib, a potent molecularly-targeted drug. Although, achieving durable brain exposures of ispinesib is critical for adequate tumor cell engagement during mitosis, when tumor cells are vulnerable, for efficacy. Our results demonstrate that the delivery of ispinesib is restricted by P-gp and Bcrp efflux at BBB. Thereby, ispinesib distribution is heterogeneous with concentrations substantially lower in invasive tumor rim (intact BBB) compared to glioblastoma core (disrupted BBB). We further find that elacridar-a P-gp and Bcrp inhibitor-improves brain accumulation of ispinesib, resulting in remarkably reduced tumor growth and extended survival in a rodent model of glioblastoma. Such observations show the benefits and feasibility of pairing a potentially ideal treatment with a compound that improves its brain accumulation, and supports use of this strategy in clinical exploration of cell cycle-targeting therapies in brain cancers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-63494-7DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7162859PMC
April 2020

Intracerebroventricular enzyme replacement therapy with β-galactosidase reverses brain pathologies due to GM1 gangliosidosis in mice.

J Biol Chem 2020 09 3;295(39):13532-13555. Epub 2019 Sep 3.

Research, BioMarin Pharmaceutical, Inc., Novato, California 94949. Electronic address:

Autosomal recessive mutations in the galactosidase β1 () gene cause lysosomal β-gal deficiency, resulting in accumulation of galactose-containing substrates and onset of the progressive and fatal neurodegenerative lysosomal storage disease, GM1 gangliosidosis. Here, an enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) approach in fibroblasts from GM1 gangliosidosis patients with recombinant human β-gal (rhβ-gal) produced in Chinese hamster ovary cells enabled direct and precise rhβ-gal delivery to acidified lysosomes. A single, low dose (3 nm) of rhβ-gal was sufficient for normalizing β-gal activity and mediating substrate clearance for several weeks. We found that rhβ-gal uptake by the fibroblasts is dose-dependent and saturable and can be competitively inhibited by mannose 6-phosphate, suggesting cation-independent, mannose 6-phosphate receptor-mediated endocytosis from the cell surface. A single intracerebroventricularly (ICV) administered dose of rhβ-gal (100 μg) resulted in broad bilateral biodistribution of rhβ-gal to critical regions of pathology in a mouse model of GM1 gangliosidosis. Weekly ICV dosing of rhβ-gal for 8 weeks substantially reduced brain levels of ganglioside and oligosaccharide substrates and reversed well-established secondary neuropathology. Of note, unlike with the ERT approach, chronic lentivirus-mediated GLB1 overexpression in the GM1 gangliosidosis patient fibroblasts caused accumulation of a prelysosomal pool of β-gal, resulting in activation of the unfolded protein response and endoplasmic reticulum stress. This outcome was unsurprising in light of our biophysical findings for rhβ-gal, which include pH-dependent and concentration-dependent stability and dynamic self-association. Collectively, our results highlight that ICV-ERT is an effective therapeutic intervention for managing GM1 gangliosidosis potentially more safely than with gene therapy approaches.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1074/jbc.RA119.009811DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7521651PMC
September 2020

Differential Uptake of NAGLU-IGF2 and Unmodified NAGLU in Cellular Models of Sanfilippo Syndrome Type B.

Mol Ther Methods Clin Dev 2019 Sep 24;14:56-63. Epub 2019 May 24.

Research, BioMarin Pharmaceutical, Inc., Novato, CA 94949, USA.

Sanfilippo syndrome type B, or mucopolysaccharidosis IIIB (MPS IIIB), is a rare autosomal recessive lysosomal storage disease caused by a deficiency of αacetylglucosaminidase (NAGLU). Deficiency in NAGLU disrupts the lysosomal turnover of heparan sulfate (HS), which results in the abnormal accumulation of partially degraded HS in cells and tissues. BMN 250 (NAGLU-insulin-like growth factor 2 [IGF2]) is a recombinant fusion protein developed as an investigational enzyme replacement therapy for MPS IIIB. The IGF2 peptide on BMN 250 promotes enhanced targeting of the enzyme to lysosomes through its interaction with the mannose 6-phosphate receptor. The focus of these studies was to further characterize the ability of NAGLU-IGF2 to clear accumulated HS compared to unmodified NAGLU in primary cellular models of MPS IIIB. Here, we establish distinct primary cell models of MPS IIIB with HS accumulation. These cellular models revealed distinct NAGLU uptake characteristics that depend on the duration of exposure. We found that with sustained exposure, NAGLU uptake and HS clearance occurred independent of known lysosomal targeting signals. In contrast, under conditions of limited exposure duration, NAGLU-IGF2 was taken up more rapidly than the unmodified NAGLU into MPS IIIB primary fibroblasts, astrocytes, and cortical neurons, where it efficiently degraded accumulated HS. These studies illustrate the importance of using physiologically relevant conditions in the evaluation of enzyme replacement therapies in cellular models.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.omtm.2019.05.008DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6606967PMC
September 2019

Myosin IIA suppresses glioblastoma development in a mechanically sensitive manner.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2019 07 24;116(31):15550-15559. Epub 2019 Jun 24.

Department of Molecular Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL 32224;

The ability of glioblastoma to disperse through the brain contributes to its lethality, and blocking this behavior has been an appealing therapeutic approach. Although a number of proinvasive signaling pathways are active in glioblastoma, many are redundant, so targeting one can be overcome by activating another. However, these pathways converge on nonredundant components of the cytoskeleton, and we have shown that inhibiting one of these-the myosin II family of cytoskeletal motors-blocks glioblastoma invasion even with simultaneous activation of multiple upstream promigratory pathways. Myosin IIA and IIB are the most prevalent isoforms of myosin II in glioblastoma, and we now show that codeleting these myosins markedly impairs tumorigenesis and significantly prolongs survival in a rodent model of this disease. However, while targeting just myosin IIA also impairs tumor invasion, it surprisingly increases tumor proliferation in a manner that depends on environmental mechanics. On soft surfaces myosin IIA deletion enhances ERK1/2 activity, while on stiff surfaces it enhances the activity of NFκB, not only in glioblastoma but in triple-negative breast carcinoma and normal keratinocytes as well. We conclude myosin IIA suppresses tumorigenesis in at least two ways that are modulated by the mechanics of the tumor and its stroma. Our results also suggest that inhibiting tumor invasion can enhance tumor proliferation and that effective therapy requires targeting cellular components that drive both proliferation and invasion simultaneously.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1902847116DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6681735PMC
July 2019

BMN 250, a fusion of lysosomal alpha-N-acetylglucosaminidase with IGF2, exhibits different patterns of cellular uptake into critical cell types of Sanfilippo syndrome B disease pathogenesis.

PLoS One 2019 18;14(1):e0207836. Epub 2019 Jan 18.

Research, BioMarin Pharmaceutical, Inc., Novato, CA, United States of America.

Sanfilippo syndrome type B (Sanfilippo B; Mucopolysaccharidosis type IIIB) occurs due to genetic deficiency of lysosomal alpha-N-acetylglucosaminidase (NAGLU) and subsequent lysosomal accumulation of heparan sulfate (HS), which coincides with devastating neurodegenerative disease. Because NAGLU expressed in Chinese hamster ovary cells is not mannose-6-phosphorylated, we developed an insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2)-tagged NAGLU molecule (BMN 250; tralesinidase alfa) that binds avidly to the IGF2 / cation-independent mannose 6-phosphate receptor (CI-MPR) for glycosylation independent lysosomal targeting. BMN 250 is currently being developed as an investigational enzyme replacement therapy for Sanfilippo B. Here we distinguish two cellular uptake mechanisms by which BMN 250 is targeted to lysosomes. In normal rodent-derived neurons and astrocytes, the majority of BMN250 uptake over 24 hours reaches saturation, which can be competitively inhibited with IGF2, suggestive of CI-MPR-mediated uptake. Kuptake, defined as the concentration of enzyme at half-maximal uptake, is 5 nM and 3 nM in neurons and astrocytes, with a maximal uptake capacity (Vmax) corresponding to 764 nmol/hr/mg and 5380 nmol/hr/mg, respectively. Similar to neurons and astrocytes, BMN 250 uptake in Sanfilippo B patient fibroblasts is predominantly CI-MPR-mediated, resulting in augmentation of NAGLU activity with doses of enzyme that fall well below the Kuptake (5 nM), which are sufficient to prevent HS accumulation. In contrast, uptake of the untagged recombinant human NAGLU (rhNAGLU) enzyme in neurons, astrocytes and fibroblasts is negligible at the same doses tested. In microglia, receptor-independent uptake, defined as enzyme uptake resistant to competition with excess IGF2, results in appreciable lysosomal delivery of BMN 250 and rhNAGLU (Vmax = 12,336 nmol/hr/mg and 5469 nmol/hr/mg, respectively). These results suggest that while receptor-independent mechanisms exist for lysosomal targeting of rhNAGLU in microglia, BMN 250, by its IGF2 tag moiety, confers increased CI-MPR-mediated lysosomal targeting to neurons and astrocytes, two additional critical cell types of Sanfilippo B disease pathogenesis.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0207836PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6338363PMC
September 2019
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