Publications by authors named "Irene Ferrer"

48 Publications

Tumor mutational burden assessment in non-small-cell lung cancer samples: results from the TMB harmonization project comparing three NGS panels.

J Immunother Cancer 2021 May;9(5)

H12O-CNIO Lung Cancer Clinical Research Unit, Health Research Institute Hospital 12 de Octubre (imas12) / Spanish National Cancer Research Center (CNIO), Madrid, Spain.

Background: Tumor mutational burden (TMB) is a recently proposed predictive biomarker for immunotherapy in solid tumors, including non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Available assays for TMB determination differ in horizontal coverage, gene content and algorithms, leading to discrepancies in results, impacting patient selection. A harmonization study of TMB assessment with available assays in a cohort of patients with NSCLC is urgently needed.

Methods: We evaluated the TMB assessment obtained with two marketed next generation sequencing panels: TruSight Oncology 500 (TSO500) and Oncomine Tumor Mutation Load (OTML) versus a reference assay (Foundation One, FO) in 96 NSCLC samples. Additionally, we studied the level of agreement among the three methods with respect to PD-L1 expression in tumors, checked the level of different immune infiltrates versus TMB, and performed an inter-laboratory reproducibility study. Finally, adjusted cut-off values were determined.

Results: Both panels showed strong agreement with FO, with concordance correlation coefficients (CCC) of 0.933 (95% CI 0.908 to 0.959) for TSO500 and 0.881 (95% CI 0.840 to 0.922) for OTML. The corresponding CCCs were 0.951 (TSO500-FO) and 0.919 (OTML-FO) in tumors with <1% of cells expressing PD-L1 (PD-L1<1%; N55), and 0.861 (TSO500-FO) and 0.722 (OTML-FO) in tumors with PD-L1≥1% (N=41). Inter-laboratory reproducibility analyses showed higher reproducibility with TSO500. No significant differences were found in terms of immune infiltration versus TMB. Adjusted cut-off values corresponding to 10 muts/Mb with FO needed to be lowered to 7.847 muts/Mb (TSO500) and 8.380 muts/Mb (OTML) to ensure a sensitivity >88%. With these cut-offs, the positive predictive value was 78.57% (95% CI 67.82 to 89.32) and the negative predictive value was 87.50% (95% CI 77.25 to 97.75) for TSO500, while for OTML they were 73.33% (95% CI 62.14 to 84.52) and 86.11% (95% CI 74.81 to 97.41), respectively.

Conclusions: Both panels exhibited robust analytical performances for TMB assessment, with stronger concordances in patients with negative PD-L1 expression. TSO500 showed a higher inter-laboratory reproducibility. The cut-offs for each assay were lowered to optimal overlap with FO.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jitc-2020-001904DOI Listing
May 2021

Identification of Predictive Biomarkers of Response to HSP90 Inhibitors in Lung Adenocarcinoma.

Int J Mol Sci 2021 Mar 3;22(5). Epub 2021 Mar 3.

CIBERONC, Respiratory Tract Tumors Program, 28029 Madrid, Spain.

Heat shock protein 90 (HSP90) plays an essential role in lung adenocarcinoma, acting as a key chaperone involved in the correct functioning of numerous highly relevant protein drivers of this disease. To this end, HSP90 inhibitors have emerged as promising therapeutic strategies, even though responses to them have been limited to date. Given the need to maximize treatment efficacy, the objective of this study was to use isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ)-based proteomic techniques to identify proteins in human lung adenocarcinoma cell lines whose basal abundances were correlated with response to HSP90 inhibitors (geldanamycin and radicicol derivatives). From the protein profiles identified according to response, the relationship between lactate dehydrogenase B (LDHB) and DNA topoisomerase 1 (TOP1) with respect to sensitivity and resistance, respectively, to geldanamycin derivatives is noteworthy. Likewise, rhotekin (RTKN) and decaprenyl diphosphate synthase subunit 2 (PDSS2) were correlated with sensitivity and resistance to radicicol derivatives. We also identified a relationship between resistance to HSP90 inhibition and the p53 pathway by glucose deprivation. In contrast, arginine biosynthesis was correlated with sensitivity to HSP90 inhibitors. Further study of these outcomes could enable the development of strategies to improve the clinical efficacy of HSP90 inhibition in patients with lung adenocarcinoma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms22052538DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7962034PMC
March 2021

An Fc-free EGFR-specific 4-1BB-agonistic Trimerbody Displays Broad Antitumor Activity in Humanized Murine Cancer Models without Toxicity.

Clin Cancer Res 2021 Mar 30. Epub 2021 Mar 30.

Immunotherapy and Cell Engineering Laboratory, Department of Engineering, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark.

Purpose: The induction of 4-1BB signaling by agonistic antibodies can drive the activation and proliferation of effector T cells and thereby enhance a T-cell-mediated antitumor response. Systemic administration of anti-4-1BB-agonistic IgGs, although effective preclinically, has not advanced in clinical development due to their severe hepatotoxicity.

Experimental Design: Here, we generated a humanized EGFR-specific 4-1BB-agonistic trimerbody, which replaces the IgG Fc region with a human collagen homotrimerization domain. It was characterized by structural analysis and functional studies. We also assessed pharmacokinetics, antitumor efficacy, and toxicity .

Results: In the presence of a T-cell receptor signal, the trimerbody provided potent T-cell costimulation that was strictly dependent on 4-1BB hyperclustering at the point of contact with a tumor antigen-displaying cell surface. It exhibits significant antitumor activity , without hepatotoxicity, in a wide range of human tumors including colorectal and breast cancer cell-derived xenografts, and non-small cell lung cancer patient-derived xenografts associated with increased tumor-infiltrating CD8 T cells. The combination of the trimerbody with a PD-L1 blocker led to increased IFNγ secretion and resulted in tumor regression in humanized mice bearing aggressive triple-negative breast cancer.

Conclusions: These results demonstrate the nontoxic broad antitumor activity of humanized Fc-free tumor-specific 4-1BB-agonistic trimerbodies and their synergy with checkpoint blockers, which may provide a way to elicit responses in most patients with cancer while avoiding Fc-mediated adverse reactions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-20-4625DOI Listing
March 2021

Targeting HER3, a Catalytically Defective Receptor Tyrosine Kinase, Prevents Resistance of Lung Cancer to a Third-Generation EGFR Kinase Inhibitor.

Cancers (Basel) 2020 Aug 24;12(9). Epub 2020 Aug 24.

Department of Biological Regulation, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot 76100, Israel.

Although two growth factor receptors, EGFR and HER2, are amongst the best targets for cancer treatment, no agents targeting HER3, their kinase-defective family member, have so far been approved. Because emergence of resistance of lung tumors to EGFR kinase inhibitors (EGFRi) associates with compensatory up-regulation of HER3 and several secreted forms, we anticipated that blocking HER3 would prevent resistance. As demonstrated herein, a neutralizing anti-HER3 antibody we generated can clear HER3 from the cell surface, as well as reduce HER3 cleavage by ADAM10, a surface metalloproteinase. When combined with a kinase inhibitor and an anti-EGFR antibody, the antibody completely blocked patient-derived xenograft models that acquired resistance to EGFRi. We found that the underlying mechanism involves posttranslational downregulation of HER3, suppression of MET and AXL upregulation, as well as concomitant inhibition of AKT signaling and upregulation of BIM, which mediates apoptosis. Thus, although HER3 is nearly devoid of kinase activity, it can still serve as an effective drug target in the context of acquired resistance. Because this study simulated in animals the situation of patients who develop resistance to EGFRi and remain with no obvious treatment options, the observations presented herein may warrant clinical testing.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/cancers12092394DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7563838PMC
August 2020

FGFR1 and FGFR4 oncogenicity depends on n-cadherin and their co-expression may predict FGFR-targeted therapy efficacy.

EBioMedicine 2020 Mar 27;53:102683. Epub 2020 Feb 27.

H12O-CNIO Lung Cancer Clinical Research Unit, Instituto de Investigación Hospital 12 de Octubre & Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas (CNIO), Madrid, Spain; CIBERONC, Madrid, Spain; Medical Oncology Department, Hospital Universitario Doce de Octubre. Madrid, Spain; Medical School, Universidad Complutense, Madrid, Spain.

Background: Fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR)1 and FGFR4 have been associated with tumorigenesis in a variety of tumour types. As a therapeutic approach, their inhibition has been attempted in different types of malignancies, including lung cancer, and was initially focused on FGFR1-amplified tumours, though with limited success.

Methods: In vitro and in vivo functional assessments of the oncogenic potential of downregulated/overexpressed genes in isogenic cell lines were performed, as well as inhibitor efficacy tests in vitro and in vivo in patient-derived xenografts (PDXs). mRNA was extracted from FFPE non-small cell lung cancer samples to determine the prognostic potential of the genes under study.

Findings: We provide in vitro and in vivo evidence showing that expression of the adhesion molecule N-cadherin is key for the oncogenic role of FGFR1/4 in non-small cell lung cancer. According to this, assessment of the expression of genes in different lung cancer patient cohorts showed that FGFR1 or FGFR4 expression alone showed no prognostic potential, and that only co-expression of FGFR1 and/or FGFR4 with N-cadherin inferred a poorer outcome. Treatment of high-FGFR1 and/or FGFR4-expressing lung cancer cell lines and patient-derived xenografts with selective FGFR inhibitors showed high efficacy, but only in models with high FGFR1/4 and N-cadherin expression.

Interpretation: Our data show that the determination of the expression of FGFR1 or FGFR4 alone is not sufficient to predict anti-FGFR therapy efficacy; complementary determination of N-cadherin expression may further optimise patient selection for this therapeutic strategy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ebiom.2020.102683DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7047190PMC
March 2020

Antitumor activity of an engineered decoy receptor targeting CLCF1-CNTFR signaling in lung adenocarcinoma.

Nat Med 2019 11 7;25(11):1783-1795. Epub 2019 Nov 7.

Division of Hematology and Oncology, Department of Pediatrics, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA.

Proinflammatory cytokines in the tumor microenvironment can promote tumor growth, yet their value as therapeutic targets remains underexploited. We validated the functional significance of the cardiotrophin-like cytokine factor 1 (CLCF1)-ciliary neurotrophic factor receptor (CNTFR) signaling axis in lung adenocarcinoma (LUAD) and generated a high-affinity soluble receptor (eCNTFR-Fc) that sequesters CLCF1, thereby inhibiting its oncogenic effects. eCNTFR-Fc inhibits tumor growth in multiple xenograft models and in an autochthonous, highly aggressive genetically engineered mouse model of LUAD, driven by activation of oncogenic Kras and loss of Trp53. Abrogation of CLCF1 through eCNTFR-Fc appears most effective in tumors driven by oncogenic KRAS. We observed a correlation between the effectiveness of eCNTFR-Fc and the presence of KRAS mutations that retain the intrinsic capacity to hydrolyze guanosine triphosphate, suggesting that the mechanism of action may be related to altered guanosine triphosphate loading. Overall, we nominate blockade of CLCF1-CNTFR signaling as a novel therapeutic opportunity for LUAD and potentially for other tumor types in which CLCF1 is present in the tumor microenvironment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41591-019-0612-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7087454PMC
November 2019

Notch inhibition overcomes resistance to tyrosine kinase inhibitors in EGFR-driven lung adenocarcinoma.

J Clin Invest 2020 02;130(2):612-624

Institut de Recherche en Cancérologie de Montpellier (IRCM), Université de Montpellier, Institut Régional du Cancer de Montpellier (ICM), Montpellier, France.

EGFR-mutated lung adenocarcinoma patients treated with gefitinib and osimertinib show a therapeutic benefit limited by the appearance of secondary mutations, such as EGFRT790M and EGFRC797S. It is generally assumed that these secondary mutations render EGFR completely unresponsive to the inhibitors, but contrary to this, we uncovered here that gefitinib and osimertinib increased STAT3 phosphorylation (p-STAT3) in EGFRT790M and EGFRC797S tumoral cells. Interestingly, we also found that concomitant Notch inhibition with gefitinib or osimertinib treatment induced a p-STAT3-dependent strong reduction in the levels of the transcriptional repressor HES1. Importantly, we showed that tyrosine kinase inhibitor-resistant tumors, with EGFRT790M and EGFRC797S mutations, were highly responsive to the combined treatment of Notch inhibitors with gefitinib or osimertinib, respectively. Finally, in patients with EGFR mutations treated with tyrosine kinase inhibitors, HES1 protein levels increased during relapse and correlated with shorter progression-free survival. Therefore, our results offer a proof of concept for an alternative treatment to chemotherapy in lung adenocarcinoma osimertinib-treated patients after disease progression.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1172/JCI126896DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6994195PMC
February 2020

Blood Predictive Biomarkers for Patients With Non-small-cell Lung Cancer Associated With Clinical Response to Nivolumab.

Clin Lung Cancer 2020 01 30;21(1):75-85. Epub 2019 Aug 30.

Laboratory of Thoracic and Clinical-Translational Oncology, Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria Hospital 12 de Octubre, Madrid, Spain.

Background: Immunotherapy is a promising cancer treatment, but surrogate biomarkers of clinical efficacy have not been fully validated. The aim of this work was to evaluate several biomarkers as predictors of response to nivolumab monotherapy in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer.

Patients And Methods: Blood samples was collected at baseline, at 2 months after treatment start, and at disease progression. Lactate dehydrogenase level (LDH), neutrophils, and leukocyte values were obtained from medical record. Interleukin (IL)-8, IL-11, and kynurenine/tryptophan levels were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Total protein was extracted from circulating CD8+ T cells, and BCL-2 interacting mediator of cell death (BIM) protein expression tested by western blotting.

Results: Baseline LDH levels were significantly higher in non-responder patients than in those who responded (P = .045). The increase in indoleamine 2,3 dioxygenase activity was related to progression of disease, mainly in patients who did not respond to nivolumab treatment (P = .001). Increased levels of circulating IL-8 were observed in initially responding patients at time of progression, and it was related to lower overall survival (hazard ratio, 7.49; P = .025). A highest expression of BIM in circulating CD8+ T cells could be related to clinical benefit. The Student t test and Mann-Whitney U test were used to compare groups for continuous variables. Time to events was estimated using the Kaplan-Meier method, and compared by the log-rank test.

Conclusions: Changes in plasma LDH and IL-8, indoleamine 2,3 dioxygenase activity, and BIM expression in CD8+ T cells could be used to monitor and predict clinical benefit from nivolumab treatment in these patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cllc.2019.08.006DOI Listing
January 2020

Impact of Heat Shock Protein 90 Inhibition on the Proteomic Profile of Lung Adenocarcinoma as Measured by Two-Dimensional Electrophoresis Coupled with Mass Spectrometry.

Cells 2019 07 31;8(8). Epub 2019 Jul 31.

H12O-CNIO Lung Cancer Clinical Research Unit, Instituto de Investigación Hospital 12 de Octubre & Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas (CNIO), Madrid, Spain.

Heat shock protein 90 (HSP90) is an important chaperone in lung adenocarcinoma, with relevant protein drivers such as EGFR (epidermal growth factor receptor) and EML4-ALK (echinoderm microtubule-associated protein-like protein4 fused to anaplastic lymphoma kinase) depending on it for their correct function, therefore HSP90 inhibitors show promise as potential treatments for lung adenocarcinoma. To study responses to its inhibition, HSP90 was pharmacologically interrupted by geldanamycin and resorcinol derivatives or with combined inhibition of HSP90 plus HSP70 in lung adenocarcinoma cell lines. Two-dimensional electrophoresis was performed to identify proteomic profiles associated with inhibition which will help to understand the biological basis for the responses. HSP90 inhibition resulted in altered protein profiles that differed according the treatment condition studied. Results revealed 254 differentially expressed proteins after treatments, among which, eukaryotic translation initiation factor3 subunit I (eIF3i) and citrate synthase demonstrated their potential role as response biomarkers. The differentially expressed proteins also enabled signalling pathways involved in responses to be identified; these included apoptosis, serine-glycine biosynthesis and tricarboxylic acid cycle. The proteomic profiles identified here contribute to an improved understanding of HSP90 inhibition and open possibilities for the detection of potential response biomarkers which will be essential to maximize treatment efficacy in lung adenocarcinoma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/cells8080806DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6721529PMC
July 2019

YES1 Drives Lung Cancer Growth and Progression and Predicts Sensitivity to Dasatinib.

Am J Respir Crit Care Med 2019 10;200(7):888-899

Program in Solid Tumors, Center for Applied Medical Research, Pamplona, Spain.

The characterization of new genetic alterations is essential to assign effective personalized therapies in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Furthermore, finding stratification biomarkers is essential for successful personalized therapies. Molecular alterations of , a member of the SRC (proto-oncogene tyrosine-protein kinase Src) family kinases (SFKs), can be found in a significant subset of patients with lung cancer. To evaluate (v-YES-1 Yamaguchi sarcoma viral oncogene homolog 1) genetic alteration as a therapeutic target and predictive biomarker of response to dasatinib in NSCLC. Functional significance was evaluated by models of NSCLC and metastasis and patient-derived xenografts. The efficacy of pharmacological and genetic (CRISPR [clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats]/Cas9 [CRISPR-associated protein 9]) YES1 abrogation was also evaluated. functional assays for signaling, survival, and invasion were also performed. The association between alterations and prognosis was evaluated in clinical samples. We demonstrated that YES1 is essential for NSCLC carcinogenesis. Furthermore, YES1 overexpression induced metastatic spread in preclinical models. YES1 genetic depletion by CRISPR/Cas9 technology significantly reduced tumor growth and metastasis. YES1 effects were mainly driven by mTOR (mammalian target of rapamycin) signaling. Interestingly, cell lines and patient-derived xenograft models with gene amplifications presented a high sensitivity to dasatinib, an SFK inhibitor, pointing out YES1 status as a stratification biomarker for dasatinib response. Moreover, high YES1 protein expression was an independent predictor for poor prognosis in patients with lung cancer. YES1 is a promising therapeutic target in lung cancer. Our results provide support for the clinical evaluation of dasatinib treatment in a selected subset of patients using YES1 status as predictive biomarker for therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1164/rccm.201807-1292OCDOI Listing
October 2019

A patent review of FGFR4 selective inhibition in cancer (2007-2018).

Expert Opin Ther Pat 2019 06 30;29(6):429-438. Epub 2019 May 30.

b CNIO-H12O Lung Clinical Cancer Research Unit , Fundación de Investigación Biomédica i+12 & Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas (CNIO) , Madrid , Spain.

Introduction: FGFR4 is a tyrosine kinase receptor which, under physiological conditions, is activated upon ligand binding in a highly regulated manner. This triggers downstream signaling related to proliferation and apoptosis resistance as well as other physiological processes. Many molecular alterations of the receptor and its ligands, specially FGF19, have been reported in several types of cancer, with special relevance in hepatocellular carcinoma. In addition, these have also been detected in other solid malignancies, including lung, breast, or colon cancer, among others.

Areas Covered: This review covers patent literature on specific FGFR4 inhibitors and their applications, published from 2007 to June 2018.

Expert Opinion: FGFR4 inhibition has gained relevance in oncology. A considerable number of patents disclosing different approaches to inhibit this receptor have been reported, displaying promising preclinical results for different cancer models. Currently, the safety and preliminary efficacy of several small molecule inhibitors targeting FGFR4 are under early phase clinical assessment, mainly in hepatocellular carcinoma patients. If positive results are derived from these trials, they will open the door for the application of FGFR4 small molecule inhibitors to a wide population of tumors of different types that harbor FGFR4-FGF19 signaling dysregulation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13543776.2019.1624720DOI Listing
June 2019

FGFR4 increases EGFR oncogenic signaling in lung adenocarcinoma, and their combined inhibition is highly effective.

Lung Cancer 2019 05 8;131:112-121. Epub 2019 Feb 8.

H120-CNIO Lung Cancer Clinical Cancer Research Unit, Fundación de Investigación Biomédica i+12 & Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas (CNIO), Madrid, Spain; Medical Oncology Department, Hospital Universitario Doce de Octubre & Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas (CNIO), Madrid, Spain; Medical School, Universidad Complutense, Madrid, Spain; CIBERONC, Madrid, Spain. Electronic address:

Objectives: Lung adenocarcinoma accounts for approximately half of lung cancer cases. Twenty to 50% of tumors of this type harbor mutations affecting epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) expression or activity, which can be therapeutically targeted. EGFR inhibitors in this context exhibit high efficacy and are currently used in the clinical setting. However, not all adenocarcinomas harboring EGFR mutations respond to therapy, so predictive biomarkers of therapeutic outcomes, as well as novel therapies sensitizing these tumors to EGFR inhibition, are needed.

Materials And Methods: We performed in vitro gene overexpression/silencing and tumorigenic surrogate assays, as well as in vitro and in vivo combination treatments with Fibroblast Growth Factor Receptor (FGFR)/EGFR inhibitors. At the clinical level, we determined FGFR4 expression levels in tumors from patients treated with EGFR inhibitors and correlated these with treatment response.

Results: We describe a cooperative interaction between EGFR and FGFR4, which results in their reciprocal activation with pro-oncogenic consequences in vitro and in vivo. This cooperation is independent of EGFR activating mutations and increases resistance to different EGFR inhibitors. At the therapeutic level, we provide evidence of the synergistic effects of the combination of EGFR and FGFR inhibitors in high FGFR4-expressing, EGFR-activated tumors in vitro and in vivo. Correlated with these results, we found that patients treated with EGFR inhibitors relapse earlier when their tumors exhibit high FGFR4 expression.

Conclusions: We propose a novel predictive biomarker for EGFR-targeted therapy, and a highly efficacious combinatory therapeutic strategy to treat EGFR-dependent; this may may extend the use of appropriate inhibitors beyond EGFR-mutated adenocarcinoma patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.lungcan.2019.02.007DOI Listing
May 2019

FGFR1 Cooperates with EGFR in Lung Cancer Oncogenesis, and Their Combined Inhibition Shows Improved Efficacy.

J Thorac Oncol 2019 04 9;14(4):641-655. Epub 2019 Jan 9.

H12O-CNIO Lung Cancer Clinical Research Unit, Biomedical Research Foundation i+12, Madrid, Spain; H12O-CNIO Lung Cancer Clinical Research Unit, Spanish National Cancer Research Centre (CNIO), Madrid, Spain; CIBERONC, Madrid, Spain; Medical Oncology Department, University Hospital Doce de Octubre Madrid, Spain; Medical School, Complutense University, Madrid, Spain.

Introduction: There is substantial evidence for the oncogenic effects of fibroblast growth factor receptor 1 (FGFR1) in many types of cancer, including lung cancer, but the role of this receptor has not been addressed specifically in lung adenocarcinoma.

Methods: We performed FGFR1 and EGFR overexpression and co-overexpression assays in adenocarcinoma and in inmortalized lung cell lines, and we also carried out surrogate and interaction assays. We performed monotherapy and combination EGFR/FGFR inhibitor sensitivity assays in vitro and in vivo in cell line- and patient-derived xenografts. We determined FGFR1 mRNA expression in a cohort of patients with anti-EGFR therapy-treated adenocarcinoma.

Results: We have reported a cooperative interaction between FGFR1 and EGFR in this context, resulting in increased EGFR activation and oncogenic signaling. We have provided in vitro and in vivo evidence indicating that FGFR1 expression increases tumorigenicity in cells with high EGFR activation in EGFR-mutated and EGFR wild-type models. At the clinical level, we have shown that high FGFR1 expression levels predict higher resistance to erlotinib or gefitinib in a cohort of patients with tyrosine kinase inhibitor-treated EGFR-mutated and EGFR wild-type lung adenocarcinoma. Dual EGFR and FGFR inhibition in FGFR1-overexpressing, EGFR-activated models shows synergistic effects on tumor growth in vitro and in cell line- and patient-derived xenografts, suggesting that patients with tumors bearing these characteristics may benefit from combined EGFR/FGFR inhibition.

Conclusion: These results support the extended the use of EGFR inhibitors beyond monotherapy in the EGFR-mutated adenocarcinoma setting in combination with FGFR inhibitors for selected patients with increased FGFR1 overexpression and EGFR activation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jtho.2018.12.021DOI Listing
April 2019

Enhanced Cytotoxic Activity of Mitochondrial Mechanical Effectors in Human Lung Carcinoma H520 Cells: Pharmaceutical Implications for Cancer Therapy.

Front Oncol 2018 13;8:514. Epub 2018 Nov 13.

Departamento de Química Física, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Madrid, Spain.

Cancer cell mitochondria represent an attractive target for oncological treatment as they have unique hallmarks that differ from their healthy counterparts, as the presence of a stronger membrane potential that can be exploited to specifically accumulate cytotoxic cationic molecules. Here, we explore the selective cytotoxic effect of 10--nonyl acridine orange (NAO) on human lung carcinoma H520 cells and compare them with healthy human lung primary fibroblasts. NAO is a lipophilic and positively charged molecule that promotes mitochondrial membrane adhesion that eventually leads to apoptosis when incubated at high micromolar concentration. We found an enhanced cytotoxicity of NAO in H520 cancer cells. By means Fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM) we also confirmed the formation of H-dimeric aggregates originating from opposing adjacent membranes that interfere with the mitochondrial membrane structure. Based on our results, we suggest the mitochondrial membrane as a potential target in cancer therapy to mechanically control the cell proliferation of cancer cells.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fonc.2018.00514DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6242888PMC
November 2018

KRAS-Mutant non-small cell lung cancer: From biology to therapy.

Lung Cancer 2018 10 19;124:53-64. Epub 2018 Jul 19.

Lilly Deutschland GmbH, Werner-Reimers-Strasse 2-4, D-61352 Bad Homburg, Germany; Medical Faculty Mannheim, University of Heidelberg, Mannheim, Germany.

In patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), the most frequent oncogene driver mutation in Western countries is Kirsten rat sarcoma viral oncogene homolog (KRAS), and KRAS-mutant NSCLC is associated with smoking. There are various sources of biological heterogeneity of KRAS-mutant NSCLC, including different genotypes that may be associated with specific clinical outcomes, the presence of other co-mutations that exhibit different biological features and drug sensitivity patterns, and mutant allelic content. The efficacy of chemotherapy in patients with KRAS-mutant NSCLC is generally poor and numerous novel therapeutic strategies have been developed. These approaches include targeting KRAS membrane associations, targeting downstream signalling pathways, the use of KRAS synthetic lethality, direct targeting of KRAS, and immunotherapy. Of these, immunotherapy may be one of the most promising treatment approaches for patients with KRAS-mutant NSCLC. Recent data also suggest the potential for distinct efficacy of immunotherapy according to the presence of other co-mutations. In view of the biological heterogeneity of KRAS-mutant NSCLC, treatment will likely need to be individualised and, in future, may require the use of rational combinations of treatment, many of which are currently under investigation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.lungcan.2018.07.013DOI Listing
October 2018

MAP17 predicts sensitivity to platinum-based therapy, EGFR inhibitors and the proteasome inhibitor bortezomib in lung adenocarcinoma.

J Exp Clin Cancer Res 2018 Aug 17;37(1):195. Epub 2018 Aug 17.

CIBER de Cáncer, ISCIII, Madrid, Spain.

Background: The high incidence and mortality of lung tumours is a major health problem. Therefore, the identification both of biomarkers predicting efficacy for therapies in use and of novel efficacious therapeutic agents is crucial to increase patient survival. MAP17 (PDZK1IP1) is a small membrane-bound protein whose upregulation is reported as a common feature in tumours from diverse histological origins. Furthermore, MAP17 is correlated with tumour progression.

Methods: We assessed the expression of MAP17 in preclinical models, including cell lines and patient-derived xenografts (PDXs), assessing its correlation with sensitivity to different standard-of-care drugs in lung adenocarcinoma, as well as novel drugs. At the clinical level, we subsequently correlated MAP17 expression in human tumours with patient response to these therapies.

Results: We show that MAP17 expression is induced during lung tumourigenesis, particularly in lung adenocarcinomas, and provide in vitro and in vivo evidence that MAP17 levels predict sensitivity to therapies currently under clinical use in adenocarcinoma tumours, including cisplatin, carboplatin and EGFR inhibitors. In addition, we show that MAP17 expression predicts proteasome inhibitor efficacy in this context and that bortezomib, an FDA-approved drug, may be a novel therapeutic approach for MAP17-overexpressing lung adenocarcinomas.

Conclusions: Our results indicate a potential prognostic role for MAP17 in lung tumours, with particular relevance in lung adenocarcinomas, and highlight the predictive pot0065ntial of this membrane-associated protein for platinum-based therapy and EGFR inhibitor efficacy. Furthermore, we propose bortezomib treatment as a novel and efficacious therapy for lung adenocarcinomas exhibiting high MAP17 expression.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13046-018-0871-7DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6098621PMC
August 2018

Corrigendum to "Tyrosine Kinase Receptor Landscape in Lung Cancer: Therapeutical Implications".

Dis Markers 2018 19;2018:3714684. Epub 2018 Jul 19.

Medical Oncology Department, Hospital Universitario Doce de Octubre, 28041 Madrid, Spain.

[This corrects the article DOI: 10.1155/2016/9214056.].
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2018/3714684DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6079511PMC
July 2018

Corrigendum to "Proteomic-Based Approaches for the Study of Cytokines in Lung Cancer".

Dis Markers 2018 8;2018:1404780. Epub 2018 Jul 8.

Medical Oncology Department, Hospital Universitario Doce de Octubre and Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas (CNIO), 28041 Madrid, Spain.

[This corrects the article DOI: 10.1155/2016/2138627.].
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2018/1404780DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6057326PMC
July 2018

Histology-dependent prognostic role of pERK and p53 protein levels in early-stage non-small cell lung cancer.

Oncotarget 2018 Apr 13;9(28):19945-19960. Epub 2018 Apr 13.

H120-CNIO Lung Cancer Clinical Research Unit, Instituto de Investigación 12 de Octubre and CNIO, Madrid, Spain.

Lung tumors represent a major health problem. In early stage NSCLC tumors, surgical resection is the preferred treatment, but 30-55% of patients will relapse within 5 years after surgery. Thus, the identification of prognostic biomarkers in early stage NSCLC patients, especially those which are therapeutically addressable, is crucial to enhance survival of these patients. We determined the immunohistochemistry expression of key proteins involved in tumorigenesis and oncogenic signaling, p53, EGFR, pAKT and pERK, and correlated their expression level to clinicopathological characteristics and patient outcome. We found EGFR expression is higher in the squamous cell carcinomas than in adenocarcinomas (p=0.043), and that nuclear p53 staining correlated with lower differentiated squamous tumors (p=0.034). Regarding the prognostic potential of the expression of these proteins, high pERK levels proved to be an independent prognostic factor for overall (p<0.001) and progression-free survival (p<0.001) in adenocarcinoma patients, but not in those from the squamous histology, and high p53 nuclear levels were identified as independent prognostic factor for progression-free survival (p=0.031) only in squamous cell carcinoma patients. We propose a role as early prognostic biomarkers for pERK protein levels in adenocarcinoma, and for nuclear p53 levels in squamous cell lung carcinoma. The determination of these potential biomarkers in the adequate histologic context may predict the outcome of early stage NSCLC patients, and may offer a therapeutic opportunity to enhance survival of these patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.24977DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5929438PMC
April 2018

The FGFR4-388arg Variant Promotes Lung Cancer Progression by N-Cadherin Induction.

Sci Rep 2018 02 5;8(1):2394. Epub 2018 Feb 5.

Medical Oncology Department, Hospital Universitario Doce de Octubre & Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas (CNIO), Madrid, Spain.

The FGFR4-388Arg variant has been related to poor prognosis in several types of cancer, including lung cancer. The mechanism underlying this association has not been addressed in detail in patients with this pathology. Here, we report that this FGFR4 variant induces MAPK and STAT3 activation and causes pro-oncogenic effects in NSCLC in vitro and in vivo. This variant induces the expression of EMT-related genes, such as N-cadherin, vimentin, Snail1 and Twist1. Indeed, the induction of N-cadherin protein expression by this variant is essential for its pro-tumorigenic role. The presence of the FGFR4-388Arg variant correlates with higher N-cadherin expression levels in clinical NSCLC samples and with poorer outcome in patients with FGFR expression. These results support the prognostic role of this FGFR variant in lung cancer and show that these effects may be mediated by the induction of N-cadherin expression and an EMT phenotype.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-20570-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5799167PMC
February 2018

Coordinated downregulation of Spinophilin and the catalytic subunits of PP1, PPP1CA/B/C, contributes to a worse prognosis in lung cancer.

Oncotarget 2017 Dec 26;8(62):105196-105210. Epub 2017 Oct 26.

Instituto de Biomedicina de Sevilla (IBIS), Hospital Universitario Virgen del Rocío, Universidad de Sevilla, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Sevilla, Spain.

The scaffold protein Spinophilin (Spinophilin, PPP1R9B) is one of the regulatory subunits of phosphatase-1 (PP1), directing it to distinct subcellular locations and targets. The loss of Spinophilin reduces PP1 targeting to pRb, thereby maintaining higher levels of phosphorylated pRb. Spinophilin is absent or reduced in approximately 40% of human lung tumors, correlating with the malignant grade. However, little is known about the relevance of the coordinated activity or presence of Spinophilin and its reported catalytic partners in the prognosis of lung cancer. In the present work, we show that the downregulation of Spinophilin, either by protein or mRNA, is related to a worse prognosis in lung tumors. This effect is more relevant in squamous cell carcinoma, SCC, than in adenocarcinoma. Downregulation of Spinophilin is related to a decrease in the levels of its partners PPP1CA/B/C, the catalytic subunits of PP1. A decrease in these subunits is also related to prognosis in SCC and, in combination with a decrease in Spinophilin, are markers of a poor prognosis in these tumors. The analysis of the genes that correlate to Spinophilin in lung tumors showed clear enrichment in ATP biosynthesis and protein degradation GO pathways. The analysis of the response to several common and pathway-related drugs indicates a direct correlation between the Spinophilin/PPP1Cs ratio and the response to oxaliplatin and bortezomib. This finding indicates that this ratio may be a good predictive biomarker for the activity of the drugs in these tumors with a poor prognosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.22111DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5739631PMC
December 2017

Inflammation and stem markers association to PIM1/PIM2 kinase-induced tumors in breast and uterus.

Oncotarget 2017 Aug 22;8(35):58872-58886. Epub 2017 Jul 22.

Instituto de Biomedicina de Sevilla, IBIS, Hospital Universitario Virgen del Rocío, Universidad de Sevilla, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Seville, Spain.

The PIM family of Ser/Thr kinase proteins has been implicated in tumorigenesis at different levels. PIM proteins are overexpressed in several tumor types and have been associated with chemoresistance. However, their role in hormone-dependent female tissues has not been explored, especially in the uterus, breast and ovary. We generated conditional transgenic mice with confined expression of human PIM1 or PIM2 genes in these tissues. We characterized the tumoral response to these genetic alterations corroborating their role as oncogenes since they induce hyperproliferation in all tissues and tumors in mammary gland and uterus. Furthermore, we observed a high degree of inflammatory infiltration in these tissues of transgenic mice accompanied by NFAT and mTOR activation and IL6 expression. Moreover, PIM1/2 were overexpressed in human breast, uterine and ovarian tumors, correlating with inflammatory features and stem cell markers. Our data suggest that PIM1/2 kinase overexpression provoke tissue alterations and a large IL6-dependent inflammatory response that may act synergistically during the process of tumorigenesis. The possible end-point is an increased percentage of cancer stem cells, which may be partly responsible for the therapy resistance found in tumors overexpressing PIM kinases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.19438DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5601700PMC
August 2017

Prospective Clinical Integration of an Amplicon-Based Next-Generation Sequencing Method to Select Advanced Non-Small-Cell Lung Cancer Patients for Genotype-Tailored Treatments.

Clin Lung Cancer 2018 01 23;19(1):65-73.e7. Epub 2017 Jun 23.

Medical Oncology Department, Hospital Universitario 12 de Octubre and Instituto de Investigación i+12, Madrid, Spain; Lung Cancer Group, Clinical Research Program, CNIO (Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas) and Instituto de Investigación i+12, Madrid, Spain; Centro de Investigación Biomédica en Red de Cáncer (CIBERONC), Madrid, Spain.

Introduction: A substantial fraction of non-small-cell lung cancers (NSCLCs) harbor targetable genetic alterations. In this study, we analyzed the feasibility and clinical utility of integrating a next-generation sequencing (NGS) panel into our routine lung cancer molecular subtyping algorithm.

Patients And Methods: After routine pathologic and molecular subtyping, we implemented an amplicon-based gene panel for DNA analysis covering mutational hot spots in 22 cancer genes in consecutive advanced-stage NSCLCs.

Results: We analyzed 109 tumors using NGS between December 2014 and January 2016. Fifty-six patients (51%) were treatment-naive and 82 (75%) had lung adenocarcinomas. In 89 cases (82%), we used samples derived from lung cancer diagnostic procedures. We obtained successful sequencing results in 95 cases (87%). As part of our routine lung cancer molecular subtyping protocol, single-gene testing for EGFR, ALK, and ROS1 was attempted in nonsquamous and 3 squamous-cell cancers (n = 92). Sixty-nine of 92 samples (75%) had sufficient tissue to complete ALK and ROS1 immunohistochemistry (IHC) and NGS. With the integration of the gene panel, 40 NSCLCs (37%) in the entire cohort and 30 NSCLCs (40%) fully tested for ALK and ROS1 IHC and NGS had actionable mutations. KRAS (24%) and EGFR (10%) were the most frequently mutated actionable genes. Ten patients (9%) received matched targeted therapies, 6 (5%) in clinical trials.

Conclusion: The combination of IHC tests for ALK and ROS1 and amplicon-based NGS is applicable in routine clinical practice, enabling patient selection for genotype-tailored treatments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cllc.2017.06.008DOI Listing
January 2018

Prognostic Role of the FGFR4-388Arg Variant in Lung Squamous-Cell Carcinoma Patients With Lymph Node Involvement.

Clin Lung Cancer 2017 11 10;18(6):667-674.e1. Epub 2017 May 10.

Department of Medical Oncology, Hospital Universitario Doce de Octubre & Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas (CNIO), Madrid, Spain; Centro de Investigación Biomédica en Red de Cáncer (CIBERONC), Madrid, Spain; Medical School, Universidad Complutense, Madrid, Spain. Electronic address:

Background: The identification of prognostic biomarkers for lung squamous-cell carcinoma (SCC) pathology is crucial because of its poor prognosis. A variant of the FGFR4 (fibroblast growth factor receptor 4) gene, FGFR4-388Arg, has been associated with prognosis and is linked to oncogenesis in vitro in several types of cancer. We analyzed the association of this variant with prognosis and downstream signaling alteration in lung SCC patients.

Methods: The presence of the FGFR4-388Arg variant was determined in 114 formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded lung SCC tissue samples by DNA genotyping and was correlated with clinicopathologic data. The activation of the protein kinase B (AKT) and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathways was determined by immunohistochemistry, and its association with the presence of FGFR4-388Arg was analyzed.

Results: We found that tumor differentiation status and adjuvant chemotherapy administration could be independent prognostic factors for overall survival (OS) in lymph node-affected patients, as expected. The progression-free survival and OS of patients with lymph node involvement (n = 41) and the FGFR4-388Arg genotype were significantly lower than those of patients lacking this variant (P = .035 and P = .042, respectively). Importantly, multivariate analysis supported the independent prognostic role of the FGFR4-388Arg genotype in OS (P = .025). Regarding downstream signaling, the FGFR4-388Arg genotype was not correlated with altered AKT signaling but was associated with increased MAPK activation in the SCC tumor samples (P = .017).

Conclusion: The FGFR4-388Arg variant may represent a promising prognostic biomarker in SCC patients with lymph node involvement. For these patients, FGFR4 may be a potential therapeutic target.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cllc.2017.05.008DOI Listing
November 2017

Resistance to Taxanes in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Associates with the Dynamics of a CD49f+ Tumor-Initiating Population.

Stem Cell Reports 2017 05 27;8(5):1392-1407. Epub 2017 Apr 27.

Cancer Epigenetics and Biology Program (PEBC), Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute (IDIBELL), Avinguda de la Gran Via, 199 - 203, L'Hospitalet de Llobregat, 08908 Barcelona, Spain. Electronic address:

Taxanes are a mainstay of treatment for breast cancer, but resistance often develops followed by metastatic disease and mortality. Aiming to reveal the mechanisms underlying taxane resistance, we used breast cancer patient-derived orthoxenografts (PDX). Mimicking clinical behavior, triple-negative breast tumors (TNBCs) from PDX models were more sensitive to docetaxel than luminal tumors, but they progressively acquired resistance upon continuous drug administration. Mechanistically, we found that a CD49f+ chemoresistant population with tumor-initiating ability is present in sensitive tumors and expands during the acquisition of drug resistance. In the absence of the drug, the resistant CD49f+ population shrinks and taxane sensitivity is restored. We describe a transcriptional signature of resistance, predictive of recurrent disease after chemotherapy in TNBC. Together, these findings identify a CD49f+ population enriched in tumor-initiating ability and chemoresistance properties and evidence a drug holiday effect on the acquired resistance to docetaxel in triple-negative breast cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.stemcr.2017.03.026DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5425727PMC
May 2017

Osimertinib in EGFR-mutant NSCLC: how to select patients and when to treat.

Lancet Oncol 2016 12 14;17(12):1622-1623. Epub 2016 Oct 14.

Hospital Universitario Doce de Octubre & Instituto de Investigación i+12, 28041 Madrid, Spain; Unidad de Cáncer de Pulmón, Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas (CNIO), Madrid, Spain; Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Madrid, Spain. Electronic address:

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S1470-2045(16)30506-XDOI Listing
December 2016

Efficacy of bortezomib in sarcomas with high levels of MAP17 (PDZK1IP1).

Oncotarget 2016 10;7(41):67033-67046

Instituto de Biomedicina de Sevilla, IBIS, Hospital Universitario Virgen del Rocio, Universidad de Sevilla, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas, Seville, Spain.

Sarcomas are malignant tumors accounting for a high percentage of cancer morbidity and mortality in children and young adults. Surgery and radiation therapy are the accepted treatments for most sarcomas; however, patients with metastatic disease are treated with systemic chemotherapy. Many tumors display marginal levels of chemoresponsiveness, and new treatment approaches are needed. MAP17 is a small non-glycosylated membrane protein overexpressed in carcinomas. The levels of MAP17 could be used as a prognostic marker to predict the response to bortezomib in hematological malignancies and in breast tumors. Therefore, we analyzed the expression of this oncogene in sarcomas and its relationship with clinico-pathological features, as well as tested whether it can be used as a new biomarker to predict the therapeutic response to bortezomib and new therapies for sarcomas. We found that the levels of MAP17 were related to clinical features and poor survival in a cohort of 69 patients with different sarcoma types, not being restricted to any special subtype of tumor. MAP17 expression is associated with poor overall survival (p<0.001) and worse disease-free survival (p=0.002). Cell lines with high levels of MAP17 show a better response to bortezomib in vitro. Furthermore, patient-derived xenografts (PDX) with high levels of MAP17 respond to bortezomib in vivo. Our results showed that this response is due to the lower levels of NFκB and autophagy activation. Therefore, we suggest that MAP17 is a new biomarker to predict the efficacy of bortezomib as a new therapy for sarcomas.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.11475DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5341855PMC
October 2016

Tyrosine Kinase Receptor Landscape in Lung Cancer: Therapeutical Implications.

Dis Markers 2016 26;2016:9214056. Epub 2016 Jul 26.

Medical Oncology Department, Hospital Universitario Doce de Octubre, 28041 Madrid, Spain; Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas (CNIO), 28029 Mardid, Spain.

Lung cancer is a heterogeneous disease responsible for the most cases of cancer-related deaths. The majority of patients are clinically diagnosed at advanced stages, with a poor survival rate. For this reason, the identification of oncodrivers and novel biomarkers is decisive for the future clinical management of this pathology. The rise of high throughput technologies popularly referred to as "omics" has accelerated the discovery of new biomarkers and drivers for this pathology. Within them, tyrosine kinase receptors (TKRs) have proven to be of importance as diagnostic, prognostic, and predictive tools and, due to their molecular nature, as therapeutic targets. Along this review, the role of TKRs in the different lung cancer histologies, research on improvement of anti-TKR therapy, and the current approaches to manage anti-TKR resistance will be discussed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2016/9214056DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4977389PMC
February 2017

Proteomic-Based Approaches for the Study of Cytokines in Lung Cancer.

Dis Markers 2016 30;2016:2138627. Epub 2016 Jun 30.

Medical Oncology Department, Hospital Universitario Doce de Octubre and Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas (CNIO), 28041 Madrid, Spain.

Proteomic techniques are currently used to understand the biology of different human diseases, including studies of the cell signaling pathways implicated in cancer progression, which is important in knowing the roles of different proteins in tumor development. Due to its poor prognosis, proteomic approaches are focused on the identification of new biomarkers for the early diagnosis, prognosis, and targeted treatment of lung cancer. Cytokines are proteins involved in inflammatory processes and have been proposed as lung cancer biomarkers and therapeutic targets because it has been reported that some cytokines play important roles in tumor development, invasion, and metastasis. In this review, we aim to summarize the different proteomic techniques used to discover new lung cancer biomarkers and therapeutic targets. Several cytokines have been identified as important players in lung cancer using these techniques. We underline the most important cytokines that are useful as biomarkers and therapeutic targets. We also summarize some of the therapeutic strategies targeted for these cytokines in lung cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2016/2138627DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4944034PMC
February 2017

Impact of DLK1-DIO3 imprinted cluster hypomethylation in smoker patients with lung cancer.

Oncotarget 2018 Jan 15;9(4):4395-4410. Epub 2016 Jul 15.

Instituto de Biomedicina de Sevilla (IBIS) (HUVR, CSIC, Universidad de Sevilla), Sevilla, Spain.

DNA methylation is important for gene expression and genome stability, and its disruption is thought to play a key role in the initiation and progression of cancer and other diseases. The cluster has been shown to be imprinted in humans, and some of its components are relevant to diverse pathological processes. The purpose of this study was to assess the methylation patterns of the cluster in patients with lung cancer to study its relevance in the pathogenesis of this disease. We found a characteristic methylation pattern of this cluster in smoking associated lung cancer, as compared to normal lung tissue. This methylation profile is not patent however in lung cancer of never smokers nor in lung tissue of COPD patients. We found 3 deregulated protein-coding genes at this locus: one was hypermethylated () and two were hypomethylated ( and ). Statistically significant differences were also detected in two different families of SNORDs, two miRNA clusters and four lncRNAs (, , and ). These findings were validated using data from the cancer genome atlas (TCGA) database. We have then showed an inverse correlation between DNA methylation and expression levels in 5 randomly selected genes. Several targets of miRNAs included in the cluster have been experimentally verified as tumor suppressors. All of these results suggest that the dysmethylation of the imprinted cluster could have a relevant role in the pathogenesis of lung cancer in current and former smokers and may be used for diagnostic and/or therapeutic purposes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.10611DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5796982PMC
January 2018