Publications by authors named "Zheng-Sheng Lai"

3 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Cabozantinib promotes erythroid differentiation in K562 erythroleukemia cells through global changes in gene expression and JNK activation.

Cancer Gene Ther 2021 Jun 11. Epub 2021 Jun 11.

Department of Clinical Laboratory Sciences and Medical Biotechnology, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan.

Cabozantinib is a potent tyrosine kinase inhibitor with multiple targets including MET, VEGFR2, RET, KIT, and FLT3. Cabozantinib is widely used for the treatment of medullary thyroid cancer and renal cell carcinoma. We recently suggested cabozantinib as a potential therapeutic alternative for acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients with FLT3-internal tandem duplication (FLT3-ITD). Here, we report that cabozantinib can promote differentiation in erythroid leukemia cells. We found that K562 erythroid leukemia cells treated with 1 μM cabozantinib for 72 h underwent erythroid lineage differentiation. Transcriptomic analysis revealed that various pathways associated with heme biosynthesis, hemoglobin production, and GATA1 targets were upregulated, whereas cell survival pathways were downregulated. Further examination revealed that cabozantinib-induced erythroid differentiation is at least in part regulated by JNK activation and phosphorylation. Levels of phosphorylated BCR-ABL, AKT, STAT5, ERK, and p38 also decreased following cabozantinib treatment. Therefore, we indicate that cabozantinib has dual functions. First, it induces K562 cell differentiation toward the erythroid lineage by upregulating heme biosynthesis, globin synthesis, and erythroid-associated reactions. Second, cabozantinib inhibits K562 cell proliferation by inhibiting the phosphorylation of BCR-ABL and the downstream MAPK, PI3K-AKT, and JAK-STAT signaling pathways.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41417-021-00358-wDOI Listing
June 2021

Potent and orally active purine-based fetal hemoglobin inducers for treating β-thalassemia and sickle cell disease.

Eur J Med Chem 2021 Jan 16;209:112938. Epub 2020 Oct 16.

Institute of Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Research, National Health Research Institutes, No. 35, Keyan Rd., Zhunan Town, Miaoli Country, 35053, Taiwan, ROC. Electronic address:

Reactivation of fetal hemoglobin (HbF) expression by therapeutic agents has been suggested as an alternative treatment to modulate anemia and the related symptoms of severe β-thalassemia and sickle cell disease (SCD). Hydroxyurea (HU) is the first US FDA-approved HbF inducer for treating SCD. However, approximately 25% of the patients with SCD do not respond to HU. A previous study identified TN1 (1) as a small-molecule HbF inducer. However, this study found that the poor potency and oral bioavailability of compound 1 limits the development of this inducer for clinical use. To develop drug-like compounds, further structure-activity relationship studies on the purine-based structure of 1 were conducted. Herein, we report our discovery of a more potent inducer, compound 13a, that can efficiently induce γ-globin gene expression at non-cytotoxic concentrations. The molecular mechanism of 13a, for the regulation HbF expression, was also investigated. In addition, we demonstrated that oral administration of 13a can ameliorate anemia and the related symptoms in SCD mice. The results of this study suggest that 13a can be further developed as a novel agent for treating hemoglobinopathies, such as β-thalassemia and SCD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejmech.2020.112938DOI Listing
January 2021

Pharmacological Induction of Human Fetal Globin Gene in Hydroxyurea-Resistant Primary Adult Erythroid Cells.

Mol Cell Biol 2015 Jul 18;35(14):2541-53. Epub 2015 May 18.

Institute of Molecular Biology, Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan

Pharmacological induction of the fetal γ globin gene and the consequent formation of HbF (α2/γ2) in adult erythroid cells are one feasible therapeutic strategy for sickle cell disease (SCD) and severe β-thalassemias. Hydroxyurea (HU) is the current drug of choice for SCD, but serious side effects limit its clinical use. Moreover, 30 to 50% of patients are irresponsive to HU treatment. We have used high-throughput screening to identify benzo[de]benzo[4,5]imidazo[2,1-a]isoquinolin-7-one and its derivatives (compounds I to VI) as potent γ globin inducers. Of the compounds, I to V exert superior γ globin induction and have better therapeutic potential than HU, likely because of their activation of the p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling pathway and modulation of expression levels and/or chromosome binding of γ globin gene regulators, including BCL11A, and chromatin structure over the γ globin promoter. Unlike sodium butyrate (NaB), the global levels of acetylated histones H3 and H4 are not changed by compound II treatment. Remarkably, compound II induces the γ globin gene in HU-resistant primary human adult erythroid cells, the p38 signaling pathway of which appears to be irresponsive to HU and NaB as well as compound II. This study provides a new framework for the development of new and superior compounds for treating SCD and severe β-thalassemias.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/MCB.00035-15DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4475914PMC
July 2015
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